After Chaos & Confusions Now PROTESTS at Talapady Border Over Screening of Travelers entering DK
Mangaluru: Talapady residents belonging to “Gadinadu Kannadigas” staged a protest at the toll gate in Talapady. have already started to protest against curbs on movement of travelers into Dakshina Kannada from Kerala side. While the Dakshina Kannada district administration started the screening of those entering the district from Kerala at the four border check-posts on Monday, residents protested at the Talapady check-post by accusing the Karnataka government of placing restrictions in movement between Kasaragod and Dakshina Kannada. Teams comprising Health Department staff and the police started screening people at the check-posts in Talapady in Mangaluru taluk, Saradka in Bantwal taluk, Nettanige Mudnur-Menala in Puttur taluk, and Jalsoor in Sullia taluk. (Ref: Confusion & Chaos Near Talapady Interstate Border As Screening Starts For Travelers Entering DK
District COVID-19 nodal officer H. Ashok said motorists were screened and allowed to move after telling them to produce a RT-PCR test negative report during their next visit. Motorists were also told that reports of Rapid Antigen Test will not be accepted. Dr. Ashok said students were also allowed as it was the responsibility of the institution concerned to ensure that they are tested once every 15 days. There was no restrictions on movement of ambulances as it was the responsibility of the hospital to test the patient and persons accompanying the patient for COVID-19. Throat and nasal swabs of 300 persons were randomly collected at the check-posts, he said.
On Monday, and even today, there was a long line of vehicles at the Talapady check-post as the screening began in the morning. This led residents of Manjeshwar and other neighbouring areas of Kerala to carry out the snap protest at the check-post. The protesters accused the district administration of unnecessarily placing curbs on the movement of people across the two districts. A group of protesters started stopping vehicles coming from Mangaluru and entering the Kerala border. The Mangaluru City police and the Kerala police jointly dispersed the protesters. The protesters also threatened to block the Mangaluru – Kerala national highway in retaliation if the restrictions continue.
The Dakshina Kannada district administration has recently made RT-PCR negative certificate mandatory for people entering Karnataka from Kerala. Kasaragod district panchayat standing committee chairman, Arshad Vorkady, said that restricting the movement of people and vehicles on interstate borders is a clear violation of the central government’s unlock notification. “The Union home ministry in its unlock guidelines in January has very clearly stated that there shall be no restrictions on interstate movement of people and vehicles. Today we organised a protest to express our opposition and we will intensify it if the restrictions continue. Thousands, including students, employees and patients commute daily between Kasaragod and Dakshina Kannada via Talapady, he added.
Former Kasaragod block panchayat president AKM Ashraf recalled that 22 people had died due to the closure of interstate borders during lockdown. He urged both sides to immediately resolve the issue. “Deputy commissioner of Dakshina Kannada and Kasaragod district collector should discuss the issue immediately since a large number of students studying in Mangaluru may not be able to attend classes and examinations. We will hold a march from Kasaragod to Talapady if travel restrictions continue,” he added.
Meanwhile, BJP Kasaragod district president K Shreekanth requested Karnataka chief minister BS Yediyurappa to lift the travel restrictions. “Whoever imposed travel restriction, it is the people of #Kasaragod who have suffered every time due to issues related. We all know that people of Kasaragod are dependent on various towns of Dakshina Kannada and therefore travelling between the two states can’t be restricted,” he sent a message on Instagram. The protest will be intensified blocking the highway if the Karnataka government continues the travel restrictions on borders,” he said.