New restrictions in Maharashtra from today. Here’s what’s allowed
Reeling under an unprecedented Covid-19 wave, the Maharashtra government on Tuesday announced severe, curfew-like restrictions on public movement over the next 15 days across the state. The restrictions will come into force from 8pm on Wednesday.
The government has imposed section 144 of the CrPC, prohibiting the assembly of more than five people, and has called it a curfew, banning people to step out unless for essential work. Here’s what it means:
Period of lockdown
• From 8pm on April 14 to 7am on May 1.
Timings for essential services (groceries, vegetables)
• 7am to 8pm through the week.
• Citizens can’t step out from 8pm to 7am without a valid reason.
Section 144 during the day
• More than five people cannot be seen together from 8am to 7pm.
• Only essential and emergency services exempt from all restrictions through the week.
• Fine of ₹500 to be levied for not wearing masks in public places.
What comes under essential and emergency services?
• Medical services: Hospitals, diagnostic centres, clinics, vaccinations, medical insurance offices, pharmacies, pharmaceutical companies, other medical and health services including supporting manufacturing and distribution units.
• Sanitation services and veterinary services.
• Public transport: Air services, public buses, train, taxis (including app-based services), autos (driver +2 pax), 50% of capacity of taxis and only seating in buses allowed.
• Private vehicles and buses can ply only for essential and emergency services.
• Grocery, vegetables shops and all type of food shops. However, a final decision will be taken by local authorities.
• E-commerce: Only for the supply of essential goods and services.
• Agriculture and monsoon-related activities.
• Banking services ascertained by RBI as essential. Banks, including cooperative, PSU and private-sector banks, non-banking financial corporations. Postal services, port services, stock exchange and intermediaries registered with Sebi, ATMs.
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• Petrol pumps, petroleum-related services, offshore/onshore production, cargo services.
• Offices of state and central government; municipal corporations.
• Decisions related to allowing domestic helps, drivers to be taken by local authorities. i.e., by BMC in Mumbai.
• Printing and circulation of newspapers, magazines and periodicals, only for home delivery.
• Accredited media.
What is the food and liquor scene?
• Dine-in services in restaurants banned, except for those staying in hotels attached to them.
•Takeaway and parcel services allowed. Home delivery is permitted till the entrance of the building.
• Vaccination of delivery staff is advised as per GOI norms. Compulsion of RT-PCR or antigen tests removed.
• Violation of Covid norms will attract fines of ₹1,000 for delivery personnel and ₹10,000 for the establishment.
• Roadside eateries are allowed to operate only for parcels and home deliveries.
• Violation may attract fine of ₹500 each for the customer and the operator and may lead to closing down of the eatery.
• Home delivery of liquor from bars allowed. However, a decision on wine shops and their home deliveries to be taken by local authorities.
What about ceremonies?
• Marriages will be allowed, only with a maximum of 25 people in attendance. All staff need to be vaccinated and till vaccinated, will have to carry a valid Covid-negative report.
• In case of violation, the offender will be fined ₹1,000 and a fine of ₹10,000 will be levied on the establishment.
• The premises would be sealed in case and permission to conduct any gathering till the end of Covid-19 pandemic will be withdrawn.
• Not more than 20 people allowed for funerals. They may be allowed at place of worship with strict adherence of Covid protocols.
Points to note
• Essential services establishments will have to ensure their staff is vaccinated at the earliest.
• Housing societies with more than five patients to be declared micro containment zones. No outsiders will be allowed. Such societies shall have to put up a board at the gate, informing visitors and denying them entry.
• All restrictions of micro containment zones shall be monitored by the society.
• The society will be fined ₹10,000 for first-time violation. Repeated violations may attract higher fines as decided by the local authorities.
• The societies are advised to ensure all persons coming in to the building on a regular basis get their Covid test done till they are vaccinated.
• There will be no restrictions on movement for vaccination. The beneficiaries can either use public transport, auto-taxis or own vehicles by showing valid registration proof.
• People engaged in essential/emergency services can travel by public transport, autos-taxis.
• The district collector may grant permission for political gatherings in case of districts where elections are scheduled on conditions such as not more than 200 people or 50% occupancy whichever is less for an enclosed space and 50% of the capacity at open spaces subject to complete adherence of all Covid-19 protocols.
• No further permission for political gathering be given in case of more than two violations by a candidate.
• After 8pm on the day of polling, all provisions of strict restrictions will come in to effect.
• Any industrial process, except related to essential services, which consume oxygen as raw material, will not be allowed.
• All industrial producers of oxygen will have to reserve a percentage of their production (actual as well as capacity) for medical and pharmaceutical purposes as specified by the state health department.
• Construction activity to be allowed only for sites where labourers are living on site. Movement to and fro must be aided, except for the purpose of material movement. Those engaged should get vaccinated. For violation, the developer will be fined ₹10,000 and repeated faults may led to closure of the site till the end of the pandemic.
• If workers get positive he or she should be allowed medical leave and cannot be discontinued for this reason. They should be entitled to get full wages.
What stays shut?
• Non-essential shops, malls and markets.
• Theatres, multiplexes, drama theatres, video parlours, amusement parks, water parks and, swimming pools, gyms, sports complexes, clubs.
• Shooting for films/ serials / advertisement.
• Shops, malls, shopping centres not performing essential services shall be closed.
• Religious places. However, priests will be allowed to enter premises for daily rituals.
• Beaches, gardens, open spaces.
• Schools and colleges, coaching classes to remain closed.
• Barber shops/ spas/salons/ beauty parlours to remain closed.
• All fines collected shall be used by the concerned disaster management authority towards better containment and treatment of Covid-19.