It has been said enough times that no interstate travel for the reason of celebrating Hari Raya Aidilfitri will be permitted during the conditional movement control order (CMCO), but there are still many who don’t seem to understand the message and persist in attempting to apply for an interstate travel permit for that reason.

According to Johor police chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay, state police have been receiving between 1,000 to 1,500 interstate permit applications daily from the public over the past few days, with 70% of these being from those seeking to return to their hometowns to celebrate Aidilfitri, Bernama reports.

He said application from those wanting to return to their hometowns to celebrate Hari Raya were rejected, stating that interstate travel will only be permitted only for emergency cases. “As such, please do not waste your time applying if the reason for interstate travel is only for celebrating Aidilfitri,” he told the public.

“If they are still stubborn, they will be instructed to turn around at the state exit. There are still 33 roadblocks at several exits across the state borders, including at the highway and state roads or villages. Those traveling without an authorisation letter will be asked to turn back,” he said.

Yesterday, senior minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob revealed that last Friday and Saturday, police caught out 1,756 motorists attempting to make their way back to their hometowns, and ordered them to turn back. “On Friday, the police caught 508 motorists who tried to balik kampung, and on Saturday another 1,248 attempted the same,” he said during his daily non-health briefing.

He said that those who managed to sneak to their hometowns to celebrate Hari Raya authorities should not be too happy about having managed to do so, stating that authorities will be making an effort to nab violators for breaking the CMCO. The police has said it will form a special task force to identify individuals who have travelled interstate without police permission.