With the current Unlock 3 ending on 31 August 2020, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued new guidelines to fight COVID-19 and for phased re-opening of areas outside the Containment Zones, today. These guidelines would come into effect from September 1, 2020 and would be effective till September 30, 2020. The current phase of re-opening, Unlock 4, will have re-opening of more activities in a calibrated manner in areas outside containment zones & will have extended lockdown till 30 September in containment zones.
Unlock 4 Guidelines: Activities permitted Outside Containment Zones
In areas outside Containment Zones, all activities will be permitted, except the following:
A. Schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions will remain closed till 30 September, 2020. However, following activities will be permitted:
- Online distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged.
- States/UTs may permit upto 50% of teaching and non-teaching staff to be called to the schools at a time for online teaching tele-counselling and related work, in areas outside the Containment Zones only, with effect from 21 September 2020 for which, Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) will be issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW).
- Students of classes 9 to 12 may be permitted to visit their schools, in areas outside the Containment Zones only, on voluntary basis, for taking guidance from their teachers. This will be subject to written consent of their parents/ guardians and will be permitted with effect from 21″ September 2020 for which, SOP will be issued by MOHFW.
- 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. National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD), Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE) and their training providers will also be permitted. These will be permitted with effect from 21 September 2020 for which, SOP will be issued by MOHFW.
- Higher Education Institutions only for research scholars (Ph.D.) 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 incidence of COVID-19 in the States/ UTS.
B. Metro rail will be allowed to operate with effect from 7th September 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, SOP will be issued by MOHUA.
C. Social/ academic/ sports/ entertainment/ cultural/ religious/ political functions and other congregations with a ceiling of 100 persons, will be permitted with effect from 21st September 2020, with mandatory wearing of face masks, social distancing, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer. However, marriage related gatherings with number of guests not exceeding 50 and funeral/ last rites related gatherings with number of persons not exceeding 20 will continue to be allowed upto 20th September 2020, after which the ceiling of 100 persons will apply.
Cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres and similar places will remain closed. However, open air theatres will be permitted to open with effect from 21st September 2020.
International air travel of passengers, except as permitted by MHA.
Unlock 4 – Lockdown limited to Containment Zones
- Lockdown shall continue to remain in force in the Containment Zones till 30 September, 2020.
- Containment Zones will be demarcated by the District authorities after taking into consideration the guidelines of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MOHFW) with the objective of effectively breaking the chain of transmission These Containment Zones will be notified on the websites by the respective District Collectors and by the States/UTs and information will be shared with MOHFW.
- In the Containment Zones, only essential activities will be allowed. There shall be strict perimeter control to ensure that there is no movement of people in or out of these zones, except for medical emergencies and for maintaining supply of essential goods and services. In the Containment Zones, there shall be intensive contact tracing, house-to-house surveillance, and other clinical interventions, as required. Guidelines of MOHFW shall be effectively implemented for the above purpose.
- Activities in the Containment Zones shall be monitored strictly by the State/UT authorities, and the guidelines relating to containment measures in these zones shall be strictly implemented.
- State/ UT Governments shall not impose any local lockdown (State/ District/ sub-division/City level), outside the containment zones, without prior consultation with the Central Government.
No Restrictions on Inter-State and Intra-State Movements
There shall be no restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods including those for cross land-border trade under Treaties with neighbouring countries. No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements.
Unlock 4 Guidelines: Movement of persons with SOPs
Movement by passenger trains; domestic passenger air travel; movement of persons on Vande Bharat and Air Transport Bubble flights; and sign-on and sign-off of Indian seafarers will continue to be regulated as per SOPs issued.
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 Aarogya Setu mobile application is a powerful tool built by Government of India to facilitate quick identification of persons infected by COVID-19, or at risk of being infected, thus acting as a shield for individuals and the community. With a view to ensure safety, various authorities are advised to encourage the use of the application.
- 29 August 2020 – Unlock 4 Guidelines by MHA – Download PDF