New Delhi: The Allahabad High Court on Monday (April 19) ordered lockdown across five cities of Uttar Pradesh in view of the worsening COVID-19 situation.
The five cities are Lucknow, Prayagraj, Varanasi, Kanpur and Gorakhpur. The restrictions will remain in place till April 26.
The court chided the Yogi Aditynath-led state government for not handling the COVID-19 pandemic well enough.
A bench comprising Justices Ajit Kumar and Siddhartha Varma issued a slew of directions which virtually amounts to a lockdown.
"Those in the helm of affairs of governance are to be blamed for the present chaotic health problems and more so when there is a democracy which means a government of the people, by the people and for the people," the order said.
The court has allowed essential services like grocery stores and pharmacies with less than three staff members to open.
It has ordered suspension of all religious activities and establishments till the end of the lockdown period. Shopping complexes and malls would remain shut as well.
Educational institutions and activities of other government, semi government or private organisations shall remain closed as per the order.
Several cities across the country are undergoing lockdown including Delhi, where a 6-day complete lockdown has been ordered.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced that the city will be put under complete lockdown from the night of April 19 till April 26 morning.