The Government has decided to continue the security measures which have been imposed islandwide to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic, without any interruption until 7 April.
This was decided during a special Cabinet meeting summoned by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, to discuss the current situation of the country following COVID-19.
The Cabinet agreed that the ongoing curfew could be lifted and re-imposed sporadically, in certain Districts while continuing the curfew in the COVID-19 high risk zones which are Colombo, Gampaha and Kalutara Districts until further notice.
During the meeting, President Rajapaksa had delivered a lengthy description of how the fatal illness had entered the country and the measures that had been taken by the Government to control its spread as well as the quarantine process that is presently in effect for those infected with the virus.
Meanwhile, Army Commander Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva said the best possible course of action has been taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by identifying the Western Province as a risk area and thereby carrying out a lockdown.
He added that already 21 from Colombo, 13 from Kalutara and 10 from Gampaha as of 25 March had been tested positive for the virus and averred that the aforesaid areas had been identified as vulnerable districts in order to prevent the illness from spreading to other districts as well.
Travelling across the districts has been prohibited until further notice as well.
The Government took these measures in a backdrop where several people who arrived from overseas and those who had direct contacts with such people had tried to skip the mandatory quarantine process.
The most recent such case was reported on 25 March, when a private hospital in Panadura had to be shut down temporarily as a pregnant woman who visited the hospital claiming that she had stomach pains was tested positive for COVID-19.
She had not reported to the officials that she had direct contact with a group of relatives who had returned from a foreign country recently, the Police said.
Furthermore, DIG Ajith Rohana said the Police had received information about people who had recently returned to Sri Lanka from abroad and who had had connections with those who had been diagnosed with the COVID-19 infection, but had not yet been admitted to self-quarantine.
The Police have also introduced three telephone numbers to provide information about such individuals. Information on such persons can be given by contacting 119, 011-2444480 and 011-2444481, he added.
Information regarding electricity breakdowns, medication requirements and other urgent needs during curfew can also be provided through the aforesaid numbers.
Apart from that, a total of 2,797 suspects and 729 vehicles had been arrested for violating curfew between 20 and 25 March. According to the Police, the number of suspects arrested during the period from 6 a.m. to 12 noon on 25 March, was 115 along with 729 vehicles, DIG Rohana said.
Police Hotline: 119, 011-2444480 and 011-2444481