To protect corona warriors, UP set to bring ‘stricter’ ordinance
The new law -- Uttar Pradesh Epidemic Disease Control Ordinance-2020 – has a broad scope of coverage and strict provisions to protect corona warriors, including medical officers, health workers, para-medical staff, policemen, sanitation workers etcUpdated: Apr 30, 2020 00:04 IST
The Uttar Pradesh government on Wednesday decided to bring an ordinance with provisions stricter than the central law to protect corona warriors against attacks or misbehavior.
The new law -- Uttar Pradesh Epidemic Disease Control Ordinance-2020 – has a broad scope of coverage and strict provisions to protect corona warriors, including medical officers, health workers, para-medical staff, policemen, sanitation workers etc, said a senior government officer, who did not want to be named.
Speaking on the issue, chief minister Yogi Adityanath said: “Besides health teams and sanitation workers, government employees and representatives of various organisations are fighting against Covid-19. However, some people are working as corona carriers and attacking the medical teams and security personnel.
This is a serious crime and cannot be tolerated. Keeping this in view, we have decided to make major amendments to the Epidemic Act-1897. The union government has recently amended the Epidemic Act-1897 to provide for imprisonment and penalty against attack on or misbehavior with medical and health teams. Besides this, we are also making provision for up to seven years’ imprisonment and up to Rs 5 lakh penalty for any attack on security personnel, sanitation workers and corona warriors.”
The ordinance will provide zero tolerance towards crime against corona warriors and stringent punishment to those breaking lockdown, running away from quarantine centres or isolation wards or spitting to spread coronavirus, he said.
Besides imprisonment of up to seven years, the new law is likely to provide for penalty of up to Rs 5 lakh on the offenders.
“We are finalising the provisions to be incorporated in the draft ordinance to be placed before the state cabinet for approval soon. The ordinance will have stricter provisions,” the officer said when asked about how the state’s law would be different from the ordinance promulgated by the President.
The union government’s new law was brought by amending the Epidemic Act-1897 and focuses on protecting doctors and health workers.
The chief minister gave his nod for the ordinance after holding discussions with his ministers and senior officers at a meeting of Team-11 to review the lockdown here on Wednesday.
Yogi also asked his team to increase the capacity of dedicated Covid-19 hospitals’ beds (L-1, L-2, and L-3) to 52,000. He said a capacity of 1 lakh beds should be created on a war footing within a month and added that safety protocol for protection against infection should be followed in all Covid-19 hospitals.
The chief minister said corona testing should be increased and pool testing encouraged. He said availability of essential commodities to people must be ensured during the lockdown and action should be taken against those indulging in black marketing, hoarding and under-weighing.
Yogi said services of volunteers of Yuvak Mangal Dal, Nehru Yuva Kendra, NCC and NSS should be taken for community surveillance work. He also said self-help groups (SHGs) should be involved in providing food to those lodged in quarantine centres and shelter homes.
The chief minister said efforts should be made to convert ‘red’ zones into ‘orange’ and ‘orange’ zones into ‘green’ and that a work plan was being prepared to restart industrial activity in ‘orange’ and ‘green’ zones.