India – Efforts towards normalcy.

As part of the continued efforts to reign in COVID-19 the Government of India extended the All India Lockdown until 17th May 2020. There is also an attempt to try to return back to normalcy in a phased manner during this period and the districts in the country have been divided in to Red, Orange and Green Zones to facilitate the same.

The red zone districts are districts with large numbers of positive cases that have not shown a dip, the green zones are areas that have not seen positive cases in the last 21 days and all other areas fall under the orange zone. The orange zone has greater freedom than the red zone with some limited means of transport. The green zones will operate in a segregated manner with strict boundaries that will not permit movement from other zones. Public transportation like trains and buses are generally not allowed during the lockdown except in green zone areas.

The zone segregation is quite dynamic and can change depending on assessment of COVID-19 cases.  The major metros in India including New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad fall under the red zone district and only essential services are freely allowed. Although the central government has permitted private sector to work with 33 percent staff in such red zone areas with other measures like personal protection equipment and restricted movement between 7am to 7pm, the State Governments have been allowed to take their own decisions. In Maharashtra, (Mumbai is the Capital) the State Government has not permitted private sector to commence work. Currently the ports of Mumbai, Nhava Sheva, Hazira, Bhavnagar (Alang), Kolkata, Haldia, Krishnapatnam, Ennore and Chennai fall under red zone. The ports of Kandla, Tuna, Mundra, Sikka, Vadinar, Bedi port, Dahej, Mangalore, Karwar, Vizhinjam ,Tuticorin, Kakinada, Vizag, Gangavaram and Paradip fall under orange zone and the ports of Okha, Porbander, Pipavav, Marmagoa, Kochi fall under green zone.

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