The government has announced a two-week extension of the lockdown imposed to stop the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), but has also allowed several activities and businesses in certain areas. Here’s a primer:
What changes in lockdown 3.0?
As indicated by the government earlier, guidelines for lockdown 3.0 are area-specific. Authorities have classified Indian districts into three zones (red, orange and green). Curbs will vary from one zone to the other — maximum in red and minimum in green
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Are there new curbs on movement?
Movement of people for all non-essential activities is prohibited between 7pm and 7am in all three zones. It’s not applicable to containment zones, which are earmarked pockets inside red and orange zones, because of stricter guidelines
Are there some activities banned across all three zones?
Yes, quite a few of them. For example, domestic and international air travel of passengers; passenger movement by trains, except those cleared by the government; interstate buses for public transport; Metro rails; schools, colleges and educational institutes; and hospitality services other than those for essential employees and those stranded
All cinema halls, shopping malls, gymnasiums, sports complexes, swimming pools will be closed. All social, political, cultural and religious gatherings are not allowed
What’s allowed in green zones?
All activities except those banned nationwide. Even buses can operate with up to 50% seating capacity; and bus depots with 50% capacity
What about orange zones?
The curbs become stricter here. Inter- and intra-district buses are not allowed, in addition to activities restricted countrywide. Taxis and cab aggregators (with one driver and two passengers); and inter-district movement of individuals and vehicles (for permitted activities) are allowed
What’s banned in red zones?
Cycle rickshaws and auto-rickshaws, taxis and cab aggregators, inter- and intra-district buses, and barber shops and salons are not permitted
And what’s allowed in red zones?
* The government order lists certain activities allowed with restrictions. The movement of vehicles is allowed in certain cases, but with just two passengers besides the driver. Pillion-riding is not allowed for two-wheelers
* Industrial activities in urban areas are limited to Special Economic Zones, Export Oriented Units, and manufacturing units of essential goods and pharmaceuticals, among others. Manufacturing of IT hardware and the jute industry are also allowed with staggered shifts and social distancing
* Construction activities in urban areas are restricted to sites where workers are not needed to be brought from outside, and to renewable energy projects
* All malls and market complexes within city limits will be closed, but those selling essential items are exempt. All standalone shops and shops in residential complexes are allowed, but social distancing is a must
* Commercial and private establishments, such as print and electronic media, and IT and IT-enabled services are allowed; e-commerce activities are permitted for essential goods
* Private offices can operate with up to 33% strength. Government offices will function with officers of the level of deputy secretary and above; the remaining staff can operate with 33% strength. This rule will not apply to defence and security service, and fire and emergency services, among others.
* In rural areas, all industrial and construction activities, including MGNREGA work, are permitted. All shops outside city limits, except those in malls are allowed. All agriculture and animal husbandry works are allowed
What are the activities allowed across the country?
Essential services such as health care and policing will continue to function. Friday’s order also says all states and Union territories will allow interstate movement of goods. No fresh permit is needed for activities already permitted. Outpatient departments (OPDs) and medical clinics are permitted, except for in containment zones
What else do I need to know?
Private and public sector employees will have to use Aarogya Setu app. In all zones, people above 65 years, persons with underlying health conditions, children and pregnant women shall stay at home. Also, shops selling liquor and tobacco products will ensure six-feet distance and not more than five people at a time. The order did not specify where liquor shops will be opened, but according to reports, these shops will be open in green and orange zones
RED ZONES: These places are also known as hot spots and are areas with maximum number of Covid-19 cases. The government takes into account total number of active cases and case doubling rate, among others, before declaring an area a red zone. At present, there are 130 in India
ORANGE ZONES: Places that are neither in red nor in green category. They may have fewer cases. At present, there are 284
GREEN ZONES: Places with no cases or where no case has been reported in 21 days. At present, there are 319 in India
CONTAINMENT ZONES: Places in red or orange zones with a cluster of cases. These areas have stricter perimeter control and the movement of only essential services personnel is allowed. Aarogya Setu app is mandatory for people living here
(States are allowed to add districts in red and orange zones, but not permitted to lower the classification of any district)