6 new rules to mark fourth phase
India’s MHA said no state sought lockdown to be fully lifted, but economic activities resumed from May 18.
India will enter the fourth phase of lockdown on Monday with a new set of guidelines as announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his address to the country on May 11. India stands at its 55th day of nationwide lockdown which was imposed on March 25 for 21 days. It was extended twice from April 15 and May 4.
In the fourth phase of lockdown, green zones to have complete independence, while orange and red zone will witness reopening of activities under supervision. Strict restrictions to follow only in the containment areas of red zones only. The new rules have been set up based on the suggestions offered by the chief ministers from all states to the Centre.
Here are the 6 rules of lockdown 4.0
- Schools, colleges, cinema theaters and malls to remain closed across the country. Salons, optical stores and beauty parlours to function under police supervision, but not in containment areas.
- Limited trains and domestic flights to start operating based on need and condition of overall scenario. But no full-fledged facilities yet.
- Local trains, cabs, buses, autos and Metros to operate with limited passengers.
- State governments to decide reopening of markets in orange and red zones. Odd-even number method could be followed to open shops selling non-essential goods.
- E-commerce platforms to operate in all zones, barring containment areas. Sale of non-essential goods through such facility was already functioning in green zones.
- Containment areas of red zones to be kept outside the above relaxations.
The MHA officials said all the states opted for more relaxations to scale up economic activities. Telangana, West Bengal, Assam and Maharshtra favoured the lockdown to be extended till the month end and sought autonomy in deciding the red, orange and green zones depending on the infection spread. Mizoram extended the lockdown till May 31on Friday, while Bihar urged the Centre not to allow regular train and air transportation, barring special facilities for migrant workers’ journey. The final guidelines of the fourth phase of lockdown will be declared by the MHA ministry on Sunday after reviewing the suggestions by the states. Sources in the ministry said that it might alter the definition of red zones in the fourth phase.
According to the Union health ministry, India with 85940 cases on Saturday surpassed China in terms of total number of infections, while the death toll stood at 2752. So far India’s death rate has been one of the lowest across the globe with a good recovery rate. According to experts, India is likely to witness the peak of Covid-19 cases in June and July.
With almost two months in the world’s biggest lockdown, people across the country are looking forward to the fourth phase as it promises to offer more breathers to regular life. Reopening of trade, commerce, construction, transport and similar activity will also provide some respite to the economy which came to standstill since March end.