Lockdown 4.0 will come into force on Monday, according to an order by the National Disaster Management Authority. This phase of the nationwide lockdown will be in effect till May 31 and focuses on a gradual revival of economic activities while keeping in mind the rising number of novel coronavirus cases across the country.
The National Disaster Management Authority on Sunday issued a letter to Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, directing all ministries/departments of the government of India and state governments/authorities to extend the lockdown measures up to May 31, 2020. This order was issued under NDMA’s exercise of the powers vested to it under Section 6 (2) (i) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
In addition, NDMA has also asked the National Executive Council (NEC) to issue “modifications in the guidelines as necessary, keeping in view the need to open up economic activities while containing the spread of COVID 19”.
According to the MHA’s order number 40-3/2020-DM-I(A), all orders issued by NEC under Section 10(2)(I) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, shall cease to have effect from May 18, 2020. Local authorities have also been ordered to issue prohibitory orders under Section 133 of CrPC for a night curfew between 7 pm and 7 am. Only essential services will be exempted from these orders.
All states/UTs have been asked to ensure unrestricted inter-state and intra-state movement of medical professionals, nurses and paramedical staff along with sanitation personnel and ambulances. Inter-state movement of all types of goods/cargo is also to be allowed, including empty trucks.
Here are the MHA’s guidelines for Lockdown 4.0.
The activities that remain prohibited across India till May 31 as per the MHA’s latest order are domestic/international air travel, metro rail services, schools/colleges and other educational institutions, hotels/restaurants and other hospitality services except for those housing emergency service workers or being used as quarantine facilities. Restaurants will be allowed to operate kitchens for home delivery of food items.
In addition, all cinema halls, shopping malls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums and other places will remain closed. While sports complexes and stadiums have been allowed to reopen, no spectators will be permitted to enter these venues.
All social, political, entertainment, academic, cultural, sports and religious functions/gatherings also stand prohibited. Places of worship are to remain closed for the public.
States to make final call on passenger movement/zoning
The MHA has now permitted inter-state movement of passenger vehicles and buses, provided that consent is given by all states/UTs involved.
States/UTs have been given the authority to decide on the intra-state movement of passenger vehicles and buses.
The MHA has also transferred power to the states/UTs to delineate red, orange and green zones in accordance with the parameter issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the Government of India.
Containment zones and buffer zones within red and orange zones will be demarcated by the district authorities. However, only essential activities will be permitted in containment zones that will also be subjected to intensive tracing, house-to-house surveillance and other clinical interventions.
Wearing face masks will be compulsory in all public and workplaces, social distancing has to be followed and spitting will attract fines. Wedding functions will be permitted with not more than 50 guests and only 20 people will be allowed to attend a funeral.
Shops have been directed to ensure a minimum of six feet distance among customers and to restrict more than five people inside a shop at one time.
Sources had told India Today that a high-level meeting was held on Saturday to discuss Lockdown 4.0 with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Among the people who were part of this discussion were Home Minister Amit Shah and senior officials of the Ministry of Home Affairs. All states and union territories were asked to submit their recommendations and requests to the Centre by Friday.
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba will meet chief secretaries/DG’s of all states/UTs via video conference at 9 pm today to discuss lockdown 4.0 guidelines.