Un­lock­ing In­dia: The low­down

With the fourth phase of the lock­down com­ing to an end on Sun­day, the govern­ment has re­leased fresh guide­lines aimed at lift­ing re­stric­tions across the coun­try

Hindustan Times (Jalandhar) - - HTSPOTLIGH­T -

What’s the big change?

The fo­cus is now on un­lock­ing In­dia in phases. Places of wor­ship, shop­ping malls, and ho­tels and restau­rants can open from June 8

Are there other re­lax­ations?

Not im­me­di­ately. In the sec­ond phase, the fo­cus will be on the re­open­ing of ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tutes. The govern­ment will hold con­sul­ta­tions with states and UTs, which can dis­cuss the mat­ter with par­ents and stake­hold­ers. A de­ci­sion is likely in July

What about cin­ema halls?

Cin­ema halls, gyms, swim­ming pools, bars, and au­di­to­ri­ums are still banned. So are large gath­er­ings in­clud­ing so­cial, po­lit­i­cal, re­li­gious, and sport­ing events. A call will be taken in the third phase. No date has been set for that

Will the night cur­few re­main?

The night cur­few pro­hibit­ing non-es­sen­tial travel has been re­laxed. The ban on such move­ment will be ap­pli­ca­ble be­tween 9pm and 5am

Are there re­stric­tions on the move­ment be­tween two states?

There will be no in­tra- or in­ter-state re­stric­tions on move­ment of peo­ple and goods; no spe­cial per­mits will be nec­es­sary. How­ever, if a state/UT wishes to re­tain curbs due to a pub­lic health sit­u­a­tion, it has to pub­li­cise in ad­vance the rules and the pro­ce­dure to be fol­lowed

What about air and train travel?

The govern­ment has al­ready started lim­ited train and do­mes­tic air ser­vices. In­ter­na­tional air travel, ex­cept for those per­mit­ted by the home min­istry such as flights for evac­u­a­tion mis­sions, and metro rail ser­vices con­tinue to be banned across the coun­try. Th­ese ac­tiv­i­ties too will be taken up in the third phase

Can states and UTs tweak the Cen­tre’s guide­lines?

Yes, states/UT gov­ern­ments can pro­hibit cer­tain ac­tiv­i­ties out­side con­tain­ment zones based on their assess­ment, but they are not al­lowed to di­lute the fed­eral guide­lines

What are the curbs in con­tain­ment zones?

Till June 30, the lock­down will con­tinue in con­tain­ment zones, which will be iden­ti­fied by dis­trict au­thor­i­ties as per the health min­istry guide­lines. Only es­sen­tial ac­tiv­i­ties will be al­lowed in th­ese ar­eas. The govern­ment has also em­pow­ered states/UTs to iden­tify buf­fer zones — which are ar­eas ad­join­ing con­tain­ment zones — and im­pose re­stric­tions if needed

Is Aar­o­gya Setu manda­tory?

The govern­ment has re­it­er­ated its ad­vice for down­load­ing the con­tact-trac­ing Aar­o­gya Setu app, say­ing it “en­ables early iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of po­ten­tial risk of in­fec­tion”. Em­ploy­ers, on a best ef­fort ba­sis, have been asked to en­sure that em­ploy­ees hav­ing com­pat­i­ble phones in­stall the app

What else do I need to know?

The fresh guide­lines ad­vise peo­ple above 65 years, chil­dren be­low 10 years, preg­nant women and those with un­der­ly­ing health con­di­tions to stay in­doors

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