New Delhi, May 1, 2020: The government, on Friday, announced that the coronavirus lockdown will be extended for two weeks beyond May 4, but with some easing of restrictions.
The Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement that in view of "significant gains in the COVID-19 situation", areas with few or no cases would see "considerable relaxations".
The MHA also issued new guidelines to regulate different activities in this period, based on the risk profiling of the districts of the country into Red (hotspot), Orange, and Green zones. The new guidelines have permitted considerable easing of restrictions in Green and Orange zones.
These zones have been classified in terms of districts with either zero confirmed cases till date; or, no confirmed case in the last 21 days.
Here is a list of activities that will remain prohibited across all the country irrespective of the zones:
1) Religious places and places of worship will remain shut.
2) Places of large gatherings for political and the cultural meetings are strictly prohibited
3) Educational, training, coaching institutions, and hospitality services including hotels and restaurants to remain close during the lockdown.
4) Travel by air, rail, metro and inter-state movement by road will remain shut, unless in special cases approved by the home ministry.
5) Schools, colleges and other educational institutions will remain shut.
6) In all zones, persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, shall stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes.
7) All cinema halls, shopping malls, gymnasiums, sports complexes, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, and auditoriums will remain shut.
8) However, across the country, the movement of individuals for non-essential activities will remain "strictly prohibited" between 7 PM and 7 AM. Local authorities should issue orders for curfew or prohibitory orders under Section 144 to ensure this
Here is the list of activities that will be permitted in the three zones:
1) Movement of individuals will be allowed only for permitted activities. Four wheeler vehicles will have a maximum of two passengers besides the vehicle driver.
2) All industrial and construction activities in rural areas, including MNREGA, works, food-processing units and brick-kilns are permitted in the red zones.
3) Government offices shall function with senior officers of the level of Deputy Secretary and above at full strength, and the remaining staff attending up to 33% as per requirement.
4) Private offices can operate with up to 33% strength as per the requirement with the remaining persons working from home.
1) In Orange Zones, in addition to activities permitted in Red Zone, taxis and cab aggregators will be permitted with 1 driver & 2 passengers only.
2) Inter-district movement of individuals and vehicles will be allowed only for permitted activities.
1) A majority of activities are allowed in the Green zones, including the movement of public for non-essential items from 7 am to 7 pm.
2) Buses and depots can operate with up to 50% seating capacity and bus depots can
3) Liquor stores and pan shops will be allowed to function in green zones while ensuring social distancing, i.e a minimum of six feet distance (2 gaz ki doori) from each other, and no more than 5 persons are allowed to crowd at one time at the stores.
Liquor, pan stores to open up in Green Zones
The Ministry of Home Affairs, on Friday, announced that the nation-wide lockdown shall extend two weeks beyond May 4 in order to contain the spread of coronavirus.
In a statement, the ministry mentioned that in view of "significant gains in the COVID-19 situation", areas with few or no cases would see "considerable relaxations".
The Centre amended multiple guidelines for the red, orange and green zones including containment zones, in order to regulate the movement of people within these zones.
In view of implementing a staggered relaxation of the lockdown, MHA said that liquor and pan shops can open up in green zones, provided social distancing in maintained.
Further, the ministry specified that no more than 5 persons are allowed to crowd at one time at the stores.
Consumption of liquor, paan, gutka, tobacco etc. remains prohibited in public places during lockdown, Ministry of Home Affairs said in the statement.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi banned alcohol sales during the country’s national lockdown to contain COVID-19, blocking a crucial source of direct tax income for states already struggling to ramp up health infrastructure and provide food to millions left jobless.
The loss of liquor tax revenues an estimated Rs 700 crore ($92 million) a day - have prompted calls from states like Punjab to lift the ban.