As India's ease of restrictions began on Monday, long queues were witnessed across India as people thronged liquor shops, awaiting their turn. While some states have not yet lifted the liquor sale ban, Andhra Pradesh has allowed the sale of liquor in its state, leading to flouting of social distancing. But one exception to the case was Guntur district's Tenali.
Visuals from the town show people holding an umbrella to physically separate each other in the queue. The photos also show the umbrellas not touching, ensuring a 1-meter gap between two people. Andhra Pradesh currently has 1650 Coronavirus cases and 36 fatalities
Andhra Pradesh: People standing with umbrellas outside a liquor shop in Tenali town of Guntur district to maintain social distancing, earlier today. pic.twitter.com/g3VVqpWiCa— ANI (@ANI) May 4, 2020
Earlier in the day, queue extending 2-3 kilometres was seen outside a liquor shop on Nuzividu road of Hanuman Junction town of Krishna District. Similar long queues were seen in different parts of Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Chhatisgarh, Mumbai as Centre allowed the opening of stand-alone liquor shops outside containment zones. Police have shut down several shops in Delhi and Maharashtra after social distancing norms were flouted.
On April 26, Alappuzha's Thanneermukkom village in Kerala had mandated that all residents must hold an umbrella when they step outside, as stated by Kerala Finance minister Dr. Thomas Isaac. The idea behind this move is that if two umbrellas do not touch each other in public, it will ensure a minimum distance of one meter from one another. Umbrellas are distributed at a subsidized rate in the village, stated Isaac.
On Friday, the Ministry of Home Affairs issued a notification extending the nationwide lockdown by 2 weeks from May 4. The notification states the considerable relaxations in districts falling in green and orange zones allowed by MHA, will continue to remain in place. The Union Health Ministry has divided districts across the nation as red (classified based on total active cases, doubling rate, the extent of testing and surveillance) - 130 districts, orange (those neither in green or red zones) - 284 districts and green zones (Zero cases for past 21 days) - 319 districts. Restrictions too have been lifted accordingly. Currently, India has 42836 cases with 1389 deaths.