Visakhapatnam: A day after Vizag reported its first Coronavirus case, the city was on a near lockdown on 20 March as usually crowded areas wore a deserted look.
The patient who tested positive for COVID-19 is a resident of Alipuram near the Railway station. The approach roads to the area were closed and traffic cops were seen enforcing new traffic rules and guarding the entry junctions. Business in Dabbagarden under Alipuram, which is one of the major business hotspots, also suffered. The residents of the area are being advised to take preventive measures and stay at home. Over 7,050 houses were surveyed in Alipuram on Friday.
The fear among the citizens deepened as the day progressed with rumours spreading on WhatsApp that the patient had succumbed to the virus. All tourist spots, including parks and the Navy aircraft museum, were closed to the public. The Vizag zoo will also remain closed till 31 March.
GVMC has deployed staff to ensure that shops remain closed as per the instruction. The municipal staff members are shutting down shops that are flouting the direction and staying open. The public address systems tagged on smart poles across the city are also being used to urge people to stay home.
Meanwhile, a special 100-bed isolation ward has been set up at Government ENT hospital. The inpatients have been moved to KGH. The Chest Hospital has also set up an isolation ward,