Coronavirus guidelines: Centre extends restrictions till March 31, Home Secy cautions states to maintain vigil

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covid 19 cases in indiaThe top Home Ministry also made it clear that there should be no interstate or intrastate restrictions on the movement of persons and goods for inter-state, intra-state and cross border trade with other countries. As Coronavirus cases rise in Maharashtra and Kerala, Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla has written a letter to all the states and Union territories stressing on the importance of maintaining extreme caution and strict surveillance to fully overcome the pandemic, news agency ANI reported. The senior most official in the Union Home Ministry also informed his state and UT counterparts that the Covid-19 related guidelines and restrictions that have been in place are extended till the end of March. Bhalla informed the provincial governments that the order mentioning the guidelines for the surveillance, containment and caution against Coronavirus has been extended till March 31, 2021.

Underscoring the fact that the number of new cases of Coronavirus has considerably fallen in the majority of the states in the country, Bhalla wrote that there is still a need of maintaining caution and strict surveillance to go past the pandemic completely. In the other portion of the letter, Bhalla mentioned that all the economic activities have been permitted in the country provided that strict adherence is observed to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) guidelines issued by the state as well as central government from time to time.

The central government in its phase wise ‘Unlock’ had allowed all the economic activities in the country gradually lifting the restrictions that were imposed at the time of Coronavirus lockdown in March last year. The centre had also left it to the discretion of the state and UT governments to decide on resumption of economic activities as per the prevailing situation in their respective states.

The top Home Ministry also made it clear that there should be no interstate or intrastate restrictions on the movement of persons and goods for inter-state, intra-state and cross border trade with other countries. India on Friday registered a total of 16,488 new Coronavirus cases in the country taking the toll of total Coronavirus cases to 11,079,979 which is the second highest worldwide. Maharashtra which has been the Covid19 worst affected state since the onset of the pandemic registered more than 8000 cases straight for the third day. Kerala, the other major state contributing to the overall tally of the country, recorded a total of 3600 new cases on Friday.

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