A day after the Centre issued revised guidelines for the fourth phase of lockdown in India, the BS Yediyurappa government in Karnataka added more relaxations to it, allowing most economic activities to resume in the state. Notably, the home ministry has specifically told states not to dilute the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) guidelines on the lockdown 4.0.
Though the Centre, in its guidelines, has not permitted salons and spas to open, the state government has given them permission to start services. Malls and shopping complexes will still remain closed. Barring red and containment zones, all four state bus transport corporations will resume services across the state from tomorrow. While Sundays will see total lockdown in the state, all shops, businesses and train service within the state will remain functional during the rest of the week.
The decision was taken during CM Yediyurappa's meeting with state ministers today. The revised lockdown guidelines say only 30 people will be allowed to travel on a bus, while cabs or taxis can't ferry more than two passengers. Wearing face masks and maintaining social distance is also mandatory. The state government has allowed parks to open from 7 am to 9 am and from 5 pm to 7 pm, while restrictions will remain in place from 7 pm to 7 am.
The Centre extended lockdown by over three weeks till May 31 on Sunday, while allowing states to decide on various zones and activities within them. The authority also permitted all activities outside the containment zones, except those specifically prohibited. Diluting the curbs, the Centre also allowed inter-state movement of buses with mutual consent of states or UTs. As per the Centre's guidelines, shops and markets can open with staggered timings. While spectators will not be allowed inside a complex, sportspersons can practice as they will remain open.
The home ministry has said no state or Union Territory will dilute the guidelines issued for the nationwide lockdown. In a communication to the chief secretaries of the states and Union territories, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla has said the guidelines for the fourth phase of the lockdown were issued after taking the views of the states, following a video-conference held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with chief ministers on May 11.
Despite widespread relaxations in #Lockdown4 restrictions, States/UTs cannot dilute the restrictions imposed in MHA guidelines. Certain other activities can be prohibited or restrictions can be imposed, as deemed necessary: Home Ministry— PIB India #StayHome #StaySafe (@PIB_India) May 18, 2020
"As emphasised in my earlier letters, I would like to reiterate again that States and Union Territories cannot dilute restrictions imposed vide the aforesaid guidelines issued by MHA. States and UTs, based on their assessment of the situation, may prohibit certain other activities in various zones, or impose such restrictions as deemed necessary," he stated in the letter.