In its communication, MHA stated, “Government of Kerala (GoK) on April 17 has circulated revised guidelines for lockdown measures to all departments, district collectors, superintendent of police and other heads of department of Kerala. On examining the said order, it is observed that the Kerala government has allowed opening of activities that are prohibited as per the MHA order issued on April 15, 2020. Such additional activities allowed by State government inter alia includes opening of local workshops, barber shops, restaurants; book stores, MSMEs in municipal limits, bus travel in the Cities/ towns for shorter distance (up to 60 km); two passengers In the back seat of four wheelers. This amounts to dilution of guidelines issued by MHA and issued under the Disaster Management Act 2005.”
The letter further stated that the State government should immediately rectify the guidelines in line with the consolidated revised guidelines to ensure strict compliance of lockdown measures. MHA urged other States and UTs to not allow activities that are restricted as per the guidelines and only allow opening up of what is stated in the directives including operationalisation of rural economy.
“I would like to draw your kind attention to clause 4 (i) and (ii) of these guidelines which, inter alia, mentions that (i) State/UT Governments shall not dilute these guidelines under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 in any manner and shall strictly enforce the same and (ii) State/ UT Governments may, however, impose stricter measures than these guidelines as per requirement of the local areas,” the order issued by home secretary stated.