Business Today

Coronavirus lockdown: Here's what counts as essential services

Coronavirus update: Factories manufacturing essential commodities such as medicines, vaccines, masks, medical devices, sanitisers would also not undergo the restrictions

twitter-logo BusinessToday.In   New Delhi     Last Updated: March 23, 2020  | 16:40 IST
Coronavirus lockdown: Here’s what counts as essential services 
Coronavirus news: Essential services allowed under lockdown

As cases of coronavirus increase steadily, the central and state governments have decided to lockdown on multiple districts across the country. From shops to public transport, the governments have asked states to ensure that all non-essential services are cut down to curb the spread of coronavirus.

However, the government has specified that essential services would be exempted from the restrictions. Factories manufacturing essential commodities such as medicines, vaccines, masks, medical devices, sanitisers would also not undergo the restrictions.

As multiple districts across the country go under lockdown, here's a lowdown on what comprises essential services:

Government departments

Health, police, fire, water, electricity, sanitation, civil supply department employees would continue to work. While different governments have different arrangements, around 75 per cent of employees from other departments have either put on paid leaves of rotational duties.

Also read: Coronavirus in India Live updates: 55-year-old man dies in Kolkata; country's records 8th death

Groceries and markets

Groceries, vegetables, medicines, milk are also essential commodities. Shops providing the same will remain open. Online grocery services would also be operational.


While states have shut down public transport for non-essential services, public transport for essential services such as carrying food, medicine, ambulance, oil supplies are functional. State-run buses connecting places of strategic importance will also be operating.

Petrol pumps

LPG distribution agencies, petrol stations and PDS distribution centres will be operational.

Also read: Coronavirus: PM Modi to discuss economic impact with industry bodies


While Indian Army has announced the reduction of personnel reporting to work, security forces responsible for the internal and external security of the country are exempt from the restrictions.


Print and electronic media including newspapers, TV news, websites, radio stations employees will be allowed to report to work,


Telecom and internet services including IT and IT-enabled services will be operations. Postal services would also be operational.


While the full strength of all banks would not be operational, employees would work on rotational basis. Bank services are effective online. Some banks have also set up helplines to help customers with emergency loans. 

Also read: Coronavirus: Protective health gear, N-95 masks, coveralls in short supply

Also read: Coronavirus: Unilever, ITC, Godrej, Amul ramp up production as India stocks up due to lockdowns

  • Print

A    A   A