As India enters into the second phase of lockdown, better known as Lockdown 2.0, the government has made a list of changes, including new measures and guidelines. The Indian Ministry of Health is taking measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at all fronts. These guidelines are aimed at maintaining flow of essential services, while keeping the Coronavirus spread in check.
The general guidelines for public have been updated for Lockdown 2.0. Face covers and masks are necessary for everyone in public spaces, and social distancing is a mandate too. There is a ban on any gathering of over five persons, and gatherings such as marriages or funerals will be regulated by the district magistrate. Government has only exempted essential travel, such as for medical reasons for the public.
All work spaces are directed to have adequate sanitation and basic healthcare in place to help curb Coronavirus spread. Work places have been asked to have a gap of one hour between all shifts, with sanitization pre and post shift. Manufacturing units have been asked to frequently clean the establishments and to train all staff on social distancing norms. The rules also include instructions relating to transport of work staff and prohibition of meetings.
The government has also listed out standard operating procedure for Lockdown 2.0 for all organisations with strict instructions on isolation measures and sanitation. Apart from these, all social, political, sports, religious functions, religious places, places of worship shall be closed for public till 3 May 2020. The government has also prohibited inter-state and intra-state movement of public, including services of taxis and cab aggregators. All public transport including metro rail services has also been restricted.
Transportation of cargo, supplies, and essential goods will be allowed via railways, flights, and roadways amid COVID-19 Lockdown 2.0. Government has also allowed movement of cargo carrying vehicles across India, along with movement of staff and labour for essential operations.
Government has permitted farming and agricultural operations, and has allowed farmers and farm workers to work. Agencies engaged in agriculture field, vegetable markets, and movement of agricultural produce and related products have also been allowed with strict instructions and cautionary measures relating to COVID-19.
Operations in other sectors including fisheries, plantations, animal husbandry, print and electronic media, courier services, storage services, and many other essential services have been allowed with advice to practice caution. Many organisations would be working only at 50% workforce capacity, such as plantations and IT services, etc.
All passenger travel via road, railway, and airway has been restricted till the lockdown ends. Government has also directed educational institutions non-essential industrial and commercial activities, hotels, cinema halls, shopping complexes and theaters to stay closed. The ban also extends to all social, political, and religious gatherings amid Lockdown 2.0.
The government has also exempted, and assured smooth operation of all hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, tele-medicine facilities including COVID-19 Hospitals and COVID care centers. All medical labs, dispensaries, medicine shops, and all health care services will remain functioning. All movement of medical personnel across the country is permitted, in a bid to ensure smooth operations, including ambulance support.
India’s Lockdown 2.0 is one of the world’s biggest and strictest lockdown. The government is not only focusing on curbing Coronavirus spread, but also ensuring the movement of all essential services through out the country. As you read this, we, at AlShorts, also urge you to stay at home, practice social distancing, and stay safe.