Frequent changes in lockdown norms confuse Jalandhar residents, officials

Residents at receiving end, cops detain builders for ‘breaking’ guidelines

Frequent changes in lockdown norms confuse Jalandhar residents, officials

Deepkamal Kaur

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, May 1

Regular changes in the lockdown norms and their untimely release has often confused residents. Not just locals, but even the administrative officials remain puzzled regarding the orders, which keep on varying from day to day.

While previous orders on the lockdown were prevalent till April 30, no fresh detailed orders regarding those to be implemented from May 1 were released publicly till today evening, thus leaving everyone in a quandary over certain issues.

Cops from Division Number 6 police station today visited a few construction sites at Model Town and detained around four persons including contractors and owners for getting the construction work done during the weekend lockdown. They were made to sit at police station for more than two hours where they kept on pleading that they had received the Deputy Commissioner’s orders on WhatsApp, which mentioned that construction related work was permissible during the lockdown.

Amarjit Singh of Model Town, who was detained by the police, said he told the SHO, Surjit Singh, that during the last year’s lockdown, construction work was not allowed, but this time the government had not imposed any such restriction. “Cops refused to budge saying that it was a weekend lockdown and no such work can be allowed. The SHO did not let any of us go back,” said Amarjit.

Gurnek Singh, who was getting his house constructed in Model Town, said he even managed to get fresh orders of May 1 from the administration and showed it to the SHO where it had been mentioned that construction work was allowed. “I made the SHO talk to a senior PCD official for clarity,” said Gurnek and adding that he had to give a surety to get his builder released.

The SHO said, “Since construction is not allowed, we made builders, contractors and owners sit and make them understand that they cannot continue their work during the lockdown. I had sought clarification from the SDM before taking action. We have not booked anyone, but just warned them.”

Asked why surety bonds were made to be filled by their acquaintances before setting them free, he said, “I am busy in a meeting.”


Fresh orders issued

While point number 4 in the orders issued on April 27 to be implemented till April 30 listed construction work in the list of exempted activities. On Saturday, again as fresh orders were issued in the evening, the same point has been mentioned as point no 5.


No marriages on weekend

Even today, a number of families who had fixed marriages for the weekend had to do last minute cancellation as the Deputy Commissioner in a video released late evening said marriages will not be allowed on Saturday and Sunday. In a previous order which was valid till April 30, he had said only 20 persons would be allowed and marriage function would have to be concluded before 9 pm. Most people thought that the same orders would continue, but a video for clarification of orders issued by the DC at the last minute made many families postpone the events.

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