Coronavirus: India prepares for Lockdown 5.0, Strict implementation in worst-affected cities
As India gets done with lockdown 4.0 on May 31, the government is set to announce Lockdown 5.0 for two weeks. This new phase of lockdown is supposed to be implemented strictly in 13 cities which account for 70% of total cases of coronavirus in the country.
This would be the fifth phase of lockdown in India, once the current lockdown 4.0 ends on May 31. The first lockdown phase was imposed on March 24, in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic in India.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is supposed to issue the new guidelines regarding the lockdown soon.
Mr. Amit Shah, the Union Home Minister met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday post his meeting with the State Chief Ministers on Thursday. Mr.Shah in his meeting with PM is believed to have given the feedbacks of CMs regarding the lockdown extension situation in various states.
In the new set of relaxations, all religious places would be allowed to open. Malls and restaurants would still be non-operational.
As most of the metro line routes fall in the containment zones in various cities, the Centre is not keen to resume the metro rail operations.
As in lockdown 4.0, markets would continue to be allowed to open. Educational institutes like schools and colleges would continue to be shut.
On Thursday, Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba had a meeting with municipal commissioners and district magistrates of the 13 most-affected cities in India – Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Thane, Pune, Kolkata, Jaipur, Indore, Jodhpur, Hyderabad, Chengalpattu and Thiruvallur.
The State governments would however be given autonomous power regarding implementation of lockdown 5.0 MHA guidelines in their states issued under the Disaster Management Act of 2005. An official said, “States can improvise to make them more stringent, but they cannot dilute the provisions.”
Domestic flights that resumed operations at 33% capacity on May 25 are experiencing cancellations due to low occupancy.
As most of the migrants have already reached their native states and other people have mobilized taking flights or trains, relaxations in the fifth lockdown phase are believed to have no adverse effects, an official reported.
A senior government official stated, “The lockdown has been relaxed considerably in the fourth phase. People will have to internalize that social distancing and personal hygiene are a way of life now. Lockdown will not be imposed ruthlessly like before, but people will be told that is for their safety.”
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