Centre issues new Guidelines for Unlock 4 from September 1

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The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued new guidelines today for opening up of more activities in areas outside the Containment Zones with effect from September 1, 2020.

In Unlock 4, all activities pertaining Social, academic, sports, entertainment, cultural, religious, political functions and other congregations will be permitted with a ceiling of 100 persons, with effect from 21st September 2020 besides allowing the Metro rail to be allowed to ply from September 7 in a graded manner.

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The process of phased re-opening of activities has been extended further. The new guidelines, issued today, are based on feedback received from States and UTs, and extensive consultations held with related Central Ministries and Departments, the MHA said.

Salient features of the new guidelines

  • Metro rail will be allowed to operate with effect from September 7, 2020, in a graded manner, by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MOHUA)/ Ministry of Railways (MOR), in consultation with MHA. In this regard, Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) will be issued by MOHUA.
  • As for social gatherings are concerned, Limited gatherings up to a maximum of 100 can be held with the mandatory wearing of face masks, social distancing, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer.
  • Open-air theatres will be permitted to open with effect from September 21, 2020.
  • After extensive consultation with States and UTs, it has been decided that Schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions will continue to remain closed for students and regular class activity up to September 30, 2020. Online and distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged. However, following will be permitted, in areas outside the Containment Zones only, with effect from September 21, 2020, for which, SOP will be issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW):
    1. States/ UTs may permit up to 50% of teaching and non-teaching staff to be called to the schools at a time for online teaching/ Tele- counselling and related work.
    2. Students of classes 9 to 12 may be permitted to visit their schools, in areas outside the Containment Zones only, on a voluntary basis, for taking guidance from their teachers. This will be subject to the written consent of their parents or guardians.
    3. Skill or Entrepreneurship training will be permitted in National Skill Training Institutes, Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), Short term training centres registered with National Skill Development Corporation or State Skill Development Missions or other Ministries of Government of India or State Governments.
    4. National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD), Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE) and their training providers will also be permitted.
    5. Higher Education Institutions only for research scholars (PhD) and post-graduate students of technical and professional programmes requiring laboratory/ experimental works. These will be permitted by the Department of Higher Education (DHE) in consultation with MHA, based on the assessment of the situation, and keeping in view the incidence of COVID-19 in the States/ UTs.

All activities, except the following, shall be permitted outside containment zones: 

  1. Cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres (excluding open-air theatre) and similar places.
  2. International air travel of passengers, except as permitted by MHA.
  • Lockdown shall continue to be implemented strictly in the Containment Zones till  September 30, 2020.
  • Containment Zones shall be demarcated by the District authorities at micro-level after taking into consideration the guidelines of MoHFW with the objective of effectively breaking the chain of transmission. Strict containment measures will be enforced in these containment zones and only essential activities will be allowed.
  • Within the containment zones, strict perimeter control shall be maintained and only essential activities are allowed. 
  • These Containment Zones will be notified on the websites of the respective District Collectors and by the States and UTs and information will also be shared with MOHFW.

States not to impose any local lockdown outside Containment Zones

State and UT Governments shall not impose any local lockdown (State/District/ sub-division/City/village level), outside the containment zones, without prior consultation with the Central Government.

No restriction on Inter-State and intra-State movement

  • There shall be no restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods. No separate permission or approval or e-permit will be required for such movements.

National Directives for COVID-19 management

  • National Directives for COVID-19 management shall continue to be followed throughout the country, with a view to ensuring social distancing.  Shops will need to maintain adequate physical distancing among customers. MHA will monitor the effective implementation of National Directives.

Protection for vulnerable persons

  • Vulnerable persons, i.e., persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, are advised to stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes.

Use of Aarogya Setu

  • The use of Aarogya Setu mobile application will continue to be encouraged.

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