Deccan Chronicle

Hyderabad police issued passes without noting corona-relevant questions?

Deccan Chronicle| N VAMSI SRINIVAS

Published on: March 27, 2020 | Updated on: March 27, 2020

Many attest that cops were not strict in making sure if the applicant was a student or hostler

Representative Image. (PTI)

Representative Image. (PTI)

Vijayawada: Though the Hyderabad and Cyberabad police claimed that only students and working professionals evicted from hostels were allowed to go to their native places in Andhra Pradesh, it was in fact a free for all, with few questions asked.

The exercise of issuing one-time lockdown exemption passes started on Wednesday with the specific purpose of allowing students and inmates of paying guest hostels to return to their families in Andhra Pradesh.

But Deccan Chronicle has documentary evidence to show that Hyderabad police did not bother to check beyond a point if a person seeking a pass was a student or a boarder of a hostel. They issued several passes to a person and did not note down whereabouts, as would have been necessary as an anti-epidemic measure.

One native of Konaseema region in East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh, who spoke to Deccan Chronicle on condition of anonymity, approached the Hyderabad police on Wednesday claiming he wanted to reach his native place along with his family. He was issued a pass without being asked a single question.

He obtained another pass stating that his cousin too wanted to leave the city and the police issued him a second pass. The second pass did not have the number of the vehicle to be used by the pass holder.

With hundreds of returning natives clogging up the border crossings on March 25, top police officials in Telangana told the media that passes were originally issued to hostel residents to fetch food and other essential commodities but the passes were misused.

However, passes issued to people clearly mention that the purpose was to allow the pass holder to move out of the city.

"He requested permission to leave to his/her native place in view of the Covid 2019 situation. Hence, there is no objection to leave to his/her native place," reads the certificate issued by the Hyderabad City Police.

The Konaseema family cited above were caught in a 20 km traffic jam at a border crossing to Andhra Pradesh. They had two small children below the age of 10 years with them. They waited on the road for the entire night.

The next day also they could not make it to Andhra Pradesh. Women had a tough time finding privacy to ease themselves. Water and food were hard to find.

They then tried another border crossing to Guntur district, but there too, the roads were blocked. Finally, they returned to Hyderabad.

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