Even after the Union government’s decision to stop restrictions on inter-state movement of people and goods, the Meghalaya government on August 24 reaffirmed its earlier decision to shutdown all entry points to the state for one week in September in view of the spurt of COVID-19 cases in the state.
In a communication to chief secretaries of all states and Union territories on August 222, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla has reiterated to states that there should be no restrictions on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods during the ongoing unlocking process.
However, Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong said that the closure of all entry points is necessitated to give a much-needed break to frontline workers posted at all entry points across the state but certain essential inter-state transits will not come under the purview of the shutdown of the entry points.
“This decision was taken for easing out the pressure on the frontline health workers who have to run and man the entry points 24×7. Humanly speaking, we need to understand that it is difficult for anybody to continue working without any break. Therefore, the government has decided that the decision of closure will continue and notification in this regard has come out excluding transit movement,” he iterated.
The entry points are Byrnihat in Ri-Bhoi district, Ratacherra in East Jaintia Hills district, Bajengdoba in North Garo Hills district, Mirjumla in South West Garo Hills district, Tikrikilla and Hallidayganj in West Garo Hills districts.
During the past six months, 30470 citizens of the state have returned from all across the country.
Moreover, Tynsong said that during the closure, the areas where frontline workers are posted and working will be fully disinfected.
The deputy chief minister also urged all local authorities who are imposing their own forms of restriction in terms of inter-district movement, to refrain from doing so.
“Local authorities should respect the notifications issued by the state government with regards to quarantine and should not enforce their own rules and regulations.” Tynsong said.