Madurai, Apr 24 : Social distancing rules were thrown to wind at Madurai District Collector office on Friday, as thousands of people thronged to get ‘epasses’ with QR code for their two-wheelers forcing the authorities to disperse the crowd and lock the entrance for few minutes. District Collector T.G.Vinay on Thursday night issued an order stating that only vehicles with new e-passes having QR codes issued by the district administration will be allowed to ply and the police personnel would seize vehicles running without the e-passes starting this morning.
The order was issued by the Collector after chairing a meeting of high-ranking officials from all departments to discuss ways to prevent the community transmission of novel Coronavirus in the district. The Collector also stated that people must only purchase essential commodities from nearby shops and not venture out of their areas. The vehicle passes issued earlier were declared invalid, as they do not have QR code. Thousands of people, mostly small scale vendors of essential commodities, milk-men, farm labourers and drivers of mini trucks gathered at the Collector office and waited in lines to apply for the e-passes since this morning. After some time, the crowd further swelled, ignoring the social distancing norms prescribed in the wake of the pandemic.
The police personnel dispersed the crowd without using any force. The Collector office road was barricaded by the police to prevent entry of public. Mr Vinay, later announced that the public can use their existing passes and advised them to buy groceries and vegetables in their areas only and not to travel to other areas. (UNI)