Covid-19: Unlock 4.0 Guidelines – What’s New

Guidelines by Ministry of Home Affairs

The right given to the States/ UTs to impose additional restrictions and to prohibit certain activities outside the containment zones has been withdrawn pursuant to these Guidelines. The State/ UTs cannot impose any local lockdown, outside the containment zones, without prior consultation from the Central Government.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (“MHA”) vide its order dated 29th August 2020 issued new guidelines allowing re-opening of certain activities outside the containment zones (“Guidelines”). These Guidelines will remain in force till 30th September 2020. However, strict enforcement of lockdown has been continued in the containment zones till 30th September 2020, allowing only essential activities to operate. The key additions/ changes made pursuant to the Guidelines have been captured hereinbelow:

Guidelines by State Government of Maharashtra

The State Government of Maharashtra vide its order dated 31st August 2020 issued new set of guidelines detailing the easing of restrictions and relaxations under “Mission Begin Again” with effect from 1st September 2020 till 30th September 2020:

Conclusion

India has become the second worst-hit country by the Covid-19 pandemic in the world with approximately 5.49 million cases. There has been a sudden rise in the number of Covid-19 cases in the country. Several states have re-imposed certain restrictions amidst the recent rise in the Covid-19 cases. In Mumbai, Section 144 has been extended till 30th September 2020 restricting movement of people due to the rising number of Covid-19 cases in the city. The Government of Rajasthan has imposed Section 144 in 11 districts of the State.

Further, inspite of easing restrictions for opening of schools with effect from 21st September 2020, certain States have announced that schools will remain closed. The Delhi Government has announced that all schools will remain closed for students till 5th October 2020. The Government of Uttarakhand and Kerala have also announced that the schools will remain closed till the end of this month.

While these new set of unlock guidelines are seen to be better for business and targeted to increase and revive the economic footprint of the masses – the ground reality of the situation is disheartening to say the least.

Archana Balasubramanian, Partner with Charulata, Associate

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