New Delhi, April 1, 2020-
The Union Home Ministry has directed all the states to “strictly” implement the 21-day nationwide lockdown measures and not allow any exemption beyond the guidelines issued by it.
The Home Ministry’s direction came after reports surfaced that the authorities in some of the states and Union Territories (UT) were violating the lockdown norms by allowing exceptions beyond what have been allowed under the consolidated guidelines earlier issued by the ministry under the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
Noting that such violations may defeat the overall objective of containing the spread of COVID-19 in the country, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla in a letter to the Chief Secretaries of all the states on Tuesday requested them to follow the lockdown strictly and enforce the norms properly.
“All the states and UT administrations are requested to strictly implement the lockdown measures issued by the MHA (Ministry of Home Affairs) in exercise of the powers under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 in letter and spirit,” the letter read.
In the letter, Bhalla said: “As you are aware, based on the orders issued by the National Disaster Management Authority under Section 6(2)(i) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, I have, as Chairperson of the National Executive Committee, issued an order of even number dated March 24, 2020, with directions to the ministries and departments of government of India, states and UTs to take effective measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
“This was followed by two addendum orders of even number dated March 25 and 27 and consolidated guidelines on lockdown measures are available on MHA website.”
The Home Ministry had issued the guidelines to provide relief to exceptional services to meet the challenges faced by the people during the 21-day nationwide lockdown imposed since March 24 midnight after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the announcement to break the chain of COVID-19 transmission across the country. (Agency)