Covid-19 guidelines: Amid a spike in coronavirus infections in many states and union territories across the country, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) released a new set of rules for “surveillance, containment, and caution” to contain the Covid-19 spread. The new MHA guidelines will come into effect from Tuesday.
As per the new guidelines, the states and Union Territories have been given the authority to impose local restrictions such as night curfew. The states, however, cannot enforce lockdown without consulting the central government. The MHA has also prohibited the states from sealing their borders.
Here is the list of Covid-19 guidelines released by the home ministry effective today:
1) States and UTs, based on their assessment of the situation, may impose local restrictions, such as night curfew. However, they cannot impose any local lockdown outside the containment zones without prior consultation with the Centre.
2) The ministry said that local district, police, and municipal authorities shall be responsible to ensure that the prescribed containment measures are strictly followed. “States and UTs are mandated to strictly enforce containment measures, SOPs on various activities and COVID-appropriate behavior and exercise caution and regulate crowds,” a home ministry statement said.
3) All activities have been permitted outside containment zones except for some which have been allowed with certain restrictions.
4) These activities are international air travel of passengers, as permitted by MHA, cinema halls and theatres, with up to 50 percent capacity, swimming pools, only for the training of sportspersons and exhibition halls, only for business to business (B2B) purposes.
5) Social, religious, sports, entertainment, educational, cultural, and religious gatherings in closed spaces are allowed with up to a maximum of 50 percent of the hall capacity with a ceiling of 200 persons. In open spaces, people will be allowed as per the size of the ground. However, based on their assessment of the situation, state and UT governments may reduce the ceiling to 100 persons or less in closed spaces.
6) There shall be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods including those for cross-land-border trade under treaties with neighboring countries. No separate permission, approval, e-permit will be required for such movements.
7) According to the guidelines, states, and UTs will ensure careful demarcation of containment zones by the district authorities at the micro-level, taking into consideration the guidelines prescribed by the health ministry in this regard.
8) Only essential activities shall be allowed in the containment zones and there shall be strict perimeter control to ensure that there is no movement of people in or out of these zones, except for medical emergencies and for maintaining the supply of essential goods and services.
9) The guidelines said the state and UT governments shall take all necessary measures to promote COVID-19 appropriate behavior and to ensure strict enforcement of wearing of face masks, hand hygiene, and social distancing.
10) To enforce the core requirement of wearing of face masks, states and UTs may consider administrative actions, including the imposition of appropriate fines on persons not wearing face masks in public and workspaces.
11) The standard operating procedures (SOPs) for markets issued by the health ministry on Monday stated that online booking of groceries and doorstep delivery of those must be encouraged while incentives or discounts for those who shop during non-peak hours may be considered.
India’s coronavirus tally crossed the 94-lakh mark after 38,772 new infections were reported in the last 24 hours, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s data on Monday.