The Maharashtra government has extended the coronavirus lockdown till July 31 amid a steady growth in the COVID-19 numbers in the state. Issuing fresh guidelines for what it called ‘Mission Begin Again’, the government said that movement for non-essential activities will be restricted within the neighbourhoods in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region.
‘It is further directed that the movement of persons for the purposes of non-essential activities like shopping and the outdoor exercises, shall be restricted within the neighbourhood area limits with all necessary prescribed mandatory precautions of wearing masks, social distancing and personal hygiene,’ a statement read.
Only those attending offices and emergencies will be allowed unrestricted movement, the government said. ‘It is also directed that unrestricted movement will be permitted only for attending place of work and bonafide humanitarian requirement including medical reason’.
All essential shops, e-commerce activity for essential and non-essential items, all industrial units which are presently operational and home delivery of food will be allowed.
All essential and non-essential shops and market, except malls and market complexes, will be allowed to open from 9 am to 5 pm. ‘All Government offices (excluding Emergency, health and Medical, treasuries, disaster management, police, NIC, food and Civil Supply, FCI, NYK, Municipal Services) to function with 15 per cent strength or 15 persons whichever is higher,’ it said. All private offices in Mumbai Metropolitan Region can operate with 10 per cent strength or 10 people.
Activities related to self-employed people like plumbers, electricians, pest control, garages, printing and distribution of newspapers (including home delivery), and barber shops have also been allowed in MMR. The Mumbai Metropolitan Region is the biggest contributor in Maharashtra’s COVID-19 figures.
The Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP government has allowed relaxations for the rest of the state. ‘Intra-district bus service will be allowed with maximum 50 per cent capacity per bus with physical distancing and sanitation measures.’
The Mumbai Police on Sunday said that no non-essential movement of people will be allowed outside the radius of 2 km from their houses. The city today witnessed massive traffic jams as the police created multiple check points to strictly enforce the rule.
Maharashtra, with 1,64,626 coronavirus cases and 7,429 deaths, is the worst-hit state in the country.