Sri Lanka relaxes Curfew

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The government has decided to lift the ongoing curfew, which was imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19, in many districts and police areas in Sri Lanka, says the President’s Media Division (PMD). 

The lifting of the currently enforced curfew and the re-enforcement will be carried out as follows; 

1. The curfew in Colombo, Gampaha,  Kalutara and  Puttalam districts (EXCEPT the below mentioned police areas) will be lifted at 5 am on Wednesday (April 22) and will be re-imposed at 8pm on the same day.

In this below mentioned police divisions the curfew currently in-force will continue until further notice.

  • Colombo Districts – Kotahena, Grandpass, Bambalapitiya, Keselwatte, Maradana, Goththatuwa, Mulleriyawa, Wellampitiya, Mt.Lavinia, Dehiwal and Kouhawala.
  • Gampaha District- Ja Ela, Kochchikade and Seeduwa
  • Puttalam District – Puttalam, Marawila and Wennappuwa
  • Kalutara District- Bandaragama, Payagala, Beruwala and Aluthgama.

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 Accordingly, the curfew currently in-force in Kotahena, Grandpass, Bambalapitiya, Keselwatte, Maradana, Goththatuwa, Mulleriyawa, Wellampitiya, Mt.Lavinia, Dehiwal and Kouhawala, Ja Ela, Kochchikade, Seeduwa, Puttalam, Marawila, Wennappuwa, Bandaragama, Payagala, Beruwala and Aluthgama will continue until further notice.

 2. The curfew currently in force in other districts (EXCEPT Colombo, Gampaha,  Puttalam, Kandy,Kegalle. Ampara and Kalutara districts) will be lifted at 5:00 a.m. on Monday April 20 and will be re-imposed at 8pm on the same day. 

3. The curfew currently in force in Kandy, Kegalle and Ampara Districts Alawathugoda, Akurana, Warakapola and Akkaraipathhtu police areas will continue until further notice.

In these 3 districts ( EXCEPT the above mentioned police areas) curfew will be lifted at 5am on Monday (April 20 ) and will be re-imposed at 8pm on the same day. 

If any area where the curfew has been relaxed happens to be identified as a risk village or a zone, curfew will be re-imposed limiting only to such area. No one will be permitted to enter or leave areas designated as isolated.  

In those Police Divisions where the curfew is in force main roads can be used only for the purpose of providing essential services. Even in the Police Divisions where the curfew is lifted utilization of main roads will be limited only for essential purposes including traveling to work.

Movements between districts will not be allowed except for essential services including office work. Schools, universities, tuition classes and other education institutes and cinemas will remain closed until further notice. 

Once the curfew is relaxed, state entities including Departments, Corporations and banks should operate as usual. Only 1/3rd of the total workforce of the state organizations located within the Colombo district should report to work.

50% of the staff of the state organizations in other districts should report to work.  

All the employees of the state sector who are not required to report for work in office should work from their homes. The responsibility to decide who should come to office and who should work from home lies with head of the each organization.  

Measures recommended by the health authorities to control the spread of the virus should strictly be adhered to during office hours. The head of the organization is responsible for the provisions of facilities required to follow the recommended health guidelines.   

The private sector entities should open for work at 10.00am daily. Head of the each organization has the freedom to decide who should report to work and their number. 

These organizations too, should strictly follow the Coronavirus prevention measures endorsed by health authorities.  The Transport Board and the Railway Department must ensure transport facilities for the employees who report for work.  

Although, the number of staff attached to state institutes has been numerically limited, it is mandatory for the state transport and other essential services to function in full strength. Busses, vans and rail carriages should transport only the half of the passengers of the full capacity.

The Government requests the private passenger transport organizations to resume their services obliging these conditions. All forms of functions, pilgrimages and pleasure tours, carnivals, processions and meetings are banned until further notice.

Since the congregation of people is a hindrance to the preventive measures to control the spread of the virus, the Government also requests to suspend all religious festivals.  The prime objective of all these measures including imposing curfew is to protect the people from this pandemic.

The progress made with the strict measures so far adopted was instrumental in easing the curfew. Reviving the economy and providing relief to  low-income and the most vulnerable segment of the society who are hardly hit by the crisis is another purpose. 

However, the risk has not yet subsided completely. Hence, the Government requests the public to follow all the health guidelines and act in a responsible manner with patience to close all avenues leading to the spread of the disease.

The Government emphasizes the necessity of remaining in homes without traveling outside except for work. 

The public are requested not to gather in large numbers at market places for panic buying once the curfew is lifted. 

The Government reiterates to endure all these hardships for the well-being and progress of oneself, our children and the entire nation until the health authorities declare the complete victory over COVID – 19 pandemic.

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