New Delhi: The Ministry of Home Affairs on Saturday (May 30) announced the nationwide lockdown in containment zones will be extended till June 30. The ministry also issued guidelines for reopening of all banned activities in other areas in a phased manner.
As the advisory, all places of worship, shopping malls, hotels and hospitality sector can reopen from June 8. The night curfew, however, has been relaxed to 9 pm to 5 am, which means that movement of individuals during this time will be prohibited across the country, except for essential services. The advisory also stated that no permission, documents or e-pass will be required anymore for inter-state travel.
The health ministry will issue SOPs for the above activities, in consultation with the Central Ministries and departments concerned and other stakeholders, for ensuring social distancing and to contain the spread of COVID-19.
In areas outside containment zones, following activities will be allowed with effect from June 8:
Religious places of worship
Hotels, restaurants and other hospitality services
No restriction on inter-state movement of persons and goods:
There shall be no restriction on inter-state and intra-State movement of persons and goods. Also, no separate permission, document or e-permit will be required for any such movement.
However, if a State/ UT, based on reasons of public health and its assessment of the situation, proposes to regulate the movement of persons, it will give wide publicity in advance regarding the restrictions to be placed on such movement, and the related procedures to be followed.
Reopening of schools, colleges and education institutions:
In Phase II, schools, colleges, etc will be opened. The state governments have been advised to hold consultations at the institution level with parents and other stakeholders. Based on the feedback, a decision on the re-opening of these institutions will be taken in July. The ministry will then prepare SOP for these institutions.
Based on the assessment of the situation, the government will decide dates for re-starting services of the following activities in Phase III:
Cinema halls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places.
Social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other large congregations will remain out of bound.
Gathering for wedding ceremony/funeral:
A maximum of 50 people can participate in wedding ceremonies while 20 in a funeral or last rites of a deceased.
In the meantime, the Madhya Pradesh government led by Shivraj Singh Chouhan announced that the lockdown in the state is going to be extended till June 15.
The latest notification on lockdown 5 comes at a time when India is witnessing a worrisome surge in the COVID-19 cases since May 21, with over 6,000 cases reported every day, and over 7,000 being reported in the last two days, on May 28 and 29.