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Shops closed, vehicles off road across state: Lockdown and heavy rainfall keep Kolkata residents indoors

Life came to a near standstill across West Bengal on Thursday as a complete lockdown, imposed as part of the state’s biweekly lockdown strategy, was imposed to stem the rapidly rising Covid-19 cases. It will continue on Friday too.

Most of the residents of Kolkata stayed indoors as heavy to very heavy rain lashed the metropolis. The heavy downpour was a result of a low pressure area that formed over the Bay of Bengal on Wednesday morning. It concentrated into a depression by Thursday afternoon, said weather officials.

All shops remained closed, and vehicles went off the road across the state. The police questioned those who ventured out, asking them about their purpose for stepping out. Only health services, pharmacies, police stations, courts, correctional services, fire and emergency services, electricity, water and other utility services, and petrol pumps were allowed to function. Special police teams were seen patrolling various parts of the city, especially containment zones.

Barricades were erected in various places to stop people from coming out of their homes and neighbourhoods. Since morning Kolkata Police arrested 190 people for violating restrictions, while seven vehicles were held. They booked 188 people for not wearing masks, while eight were booked or prosecuted for spitting in public. In the state, maximum 102 people were arrested in the Sundarbans for violating lockdown rules.

Throughout the day, traffic police carried “naka checking” at important crossings. During one such check at around 6.45 pm, Sergeant Biswajit Saha (35) of Ultadanga traffic police guard was knocked down by an unknown private car at Kankurgachi crossing. He sustained injuries on his face and shoulders. Two people were detained in connection with the incident.

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