India is hit by the third wave of COVID-19, with the surge in cases of Corona Virus across the country; MHA issued the guidelines on Wednesday to break the chain of COVID-19. These guidelines will be effective from 1 December 2020 up to 31st December 2020. However, states and UTs are free to impose local restrictions based on their local assessment. The following guidelines were issued by MHA:
1) Containment zones should be strictly demarcated by states and UTs and the list of containment zones should be displayed on the official websites of the states and UTs.
2) Within the containment zones guidelines prescribed by MoHFW will be followed, which are:-
- a) Only essential activities will be allowed within the containment zones.
(b) Movement of people in or out of these zones should be prevented except for medical emergencies and supply of essential goods and services.
(c) Testing should be carried out as per the prescribed protocol.
(d) There must be house to house surveillance by the surveillance teams.
(E) Tracing and identification of the people who came in contact with the COVID-19 positive patients with 14 days follow up.
(F) Quick isolation of COVID-19 patients should be ensured either home quarantine or institutional quarantine.
(g) Local district police, municipal authorities will be responsible to ensure the strict implementation of these measures.
3) There will be no restrictions on inter-and intra-state movements.
4) Based on local assessment states and UTs may impose local restrictions such as night curfew. However local lockdown cannot be imposed on the areas outside the containment zones without prior consultation with the center.
5) States and UTs may take administrative actions, like the imposition of fines on people who are not wearing face masks in public and workspaces to ensure COVID-19 should be promoted.
6) Separate SOPs will be issued by MoHFW to ensure social distancing in public transport, markets, and weekly markets, which should be strictly enforced by the States and UTs.
7) All the activities outside the containment zones are permitted except for the following or permitted with the following restrictions-
(i) International air travel of passengers, as permitted by MHA
(ii) Cinema halls and theatres, with up to 50% capacity
(iii) Swimming pools, only for the training of sportspersons
(iv) Exhibition halls, only for business to business (B2B) purposes.
(v) Social/ religious/ sports/ entertainment/ educational/ cultural/ religious gatherings, with up to a maximum of 50% of the hall capacity, with a ceiling of 200 persons in closed spaces; and keeping of the size of the ground/ space in the view, in open spaces
However, based on their assessment of the situation, State/ UT Governments may reduce the ceiling to 100 persons or less, in closed spaces.