With the increasing number of positive cases of people affected with the coronavirus, the government has taken no risk and has extended the nationwide lockdown till the 31st of May. In the fourth phase beginning today, the government said that this phase is going to be different from the other three phases; it came with certain new guidelines and more relaxed.
The Home Ministry has bestowed power to the state and union territories to particularize red, green, and orange zones as per the COVID-19 situation taking into consideration the parameters shared by the Union Health Ministry. On one side, several relaxations will be permitted, while, on the other, educational institutions, sports complexes and stadiums, gyms, swimming pools, malls, and restaurants will remain shut as before. Suspension of flight and railway services, only except the special ones, will remain in force. Print and electronic media, telecommunications services will be functioning like before. The same goes for agricultural activities.
The list of relaxations and guidelines for the lockdown 4.0 includes:
- Buses, auto-rickshaws, cabs can operate. This inter-state movement of vehicles is to be decided by the states mutually
- All shops, except those in malls and containment zones, can open
- Barbershops, spas and salons will remain shut
- ‘Night Curfew’ will be issued (stepping out of homes between 7 pm to 7 am, except for essential services will be prohibited)
- Liquor shops to delivery online after the system gets ready
- Delivery of both essential and non-essential items are allowed through online shopping platforms
- Restaurants can function, but only to take away
- Weddings cannot have more than 50 guests and funeral not more than 20
- Eased curbs on private offices that were allowed to function with 33% staff strength; work from home to be encouraged
- Wearing of masks is compulsory in public places and office premises
- Vulnerable groups such as those above 65 years, pregnant women and children below 10 should remain at home
Though the number of cases has increased, the rate of recovery is also satisfactory to some extent and thus, the relaxations are being implemented to somewhat normalize the on-going situation all over the nation.