NEW DELHI: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Friday issued new guidelines which strictly restricted movement of people between 9 pm and 5 am across country, except for essential activities during ‘Unlock 1.0’.
In a letter addressed to the Chief Secretaries of states and UTs, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla said, “Movement of people is strictly prohibited between 9 pm and 5 am across country, except for essential activities during ‘Unlock 1.0’.”
The MHA letter further stated that restricting people’s movement from 9 pm to 5 am is aimed at preventing congregations, it doesn’t apply to buses, trucks plying on highways.
The Home Ministry guidelines further added that States, UTs are advised not to prevent movement of people in buses, trucks on highways and said that necessary instructions should be given to the authorities.
“Movement of individuals shall remain strictly prohibited between 9 PM and 5 AM throughout the country, except for essential activities. Some States/UTs are also restricting the movement of persons and vehicles plying on highways between 9 PM and 5 AM. Accordingly, States/UTs are advised not to prevent such movement as mentioned above. Necessary instructions to this effect may please be issued to the district and local authorities,” the order signed by Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla to Chief Secretaries of all States/UTs said.
It further stated that the restriction doesn’t apply to loading/unloading of goods (as part of supply chains & logistics); buses carrying persons & trucks & goods carriers plying State and NHs; or persons travelling to their destinations after disembarking from buses, trains & flights.
The new guidelines came on a day when India recorded more than 10,000 cases in the last 24 hours for the very first time since the outbreak making it the highest jump recorded in a day. The total tally crossed 2.9 lakh on Friday and the death toll was at 8498.
As per the Ministry of Health data, 10956 news cases and 396 deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours since Thursday 8 am taking the total tally to 297,535 which includes 141,842 active cases, 147,194 recovered cases, 1 migrant patient, and 8,498 deaths.
Maharashtra, the state with the highest number of confirmed cases has reported 97,648 cases. The state also witnessed 150 coronavirus-related deaths during the same time and its Covid-19 death toll is now 3,590. Tamil Nadu is second only to Maharashtra with 38,716 confirmed cases followed by Delhi with 34,687 cases and Gujarat with 22,067 cases.