As India entered the 54th day of coronavirus-induced lockdown, the Centre has extended it by two more weeks until ay 31 with several relaxations. Earlier in the day, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu joined Punjab in extending the lockdown. Karnataka, on the other hand, has extended it only for two more days.
The new guidelines have allowed salons, barbershops, shopping complexes and markets to open from May 18. However, domestic flights, schools, colleges and hotels will continue to remain closed throughout the country.
The inter-state movement of passenger vehicles and buses with requisite permits has also been allowed. Except for the containment zones, there are no zone-wise restriction from the government and the states are given the liberty to decide on the colour coded zones (red, orange and green), with respect to the parameters laid down by the Health Ministry.
With 4,987 new cases in last 24 hours, India recorded the largest single-day spike taking the total number of positive cases in the country to 90,927 while the death toll reached 2,872.
Meanwhile, FM Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday announced the fifth and final phase of the Rs 20 lakh crore economic package. In this she mentioned that top 100 universities will start online course by May 2020.
MHA issues new guidelines for lockdown 4.0
- Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issues guidelines on measures to be taken by Ministries/Departments of Government of India, State Governments/UT Governments & State/UT authorities for containment of COVID19. Lockdown4 will remain in effect till 31st May 2020.
- The delineation of red, green, and orange zones will be decided by the respective State/Union Territory governments, after taking into consideration the parameters shared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
- All domestic and international air travel of passengers, except for domestic medical services, domestic air ambulance and for security purposes or purposes as permitted by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to remain prohibited throughout the country.
- All cinema halls, shopping malls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places, shall continue to remain closed throughout the country till 31st May
- Sports complexes and stadia will be permitted to open; however, spectators will not be allowed
- With a view to ensuring safety in offices and workplaces, employers on best effort basis should ensure that Arogya Setu is installed by all employees having compatible mobile phones. District authorities have been asked to advise individuals to install the Aarogya Setu application on compatible mobile phones & regularly update their health status on the app. This will facilitate timely provision of medical attention to those individuals who are at risk.
- All other activities will be permitted except those which are specifically prohibited under these guidelines. However, in containment zones, only essential activities shall be allowed, as mentioned earlier.
- State/UT Governments shall not dilute the lockdown guidelines issued under the Disaster Management Act 2005, in any manner
- During the extended lockdown till 31st May, the night curfew shall continue to remain in force on the movement of individuals, for all non-essential activities, between 7 pm and 7 am
- Persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, shall stay at home till 31st May, except for essential and health purposes