India enters Unlock 1.0: What has changed in the states?
Four legs of lockdown later, India entered the first phase of the three-phased unlock plan on Monday, ground rules of which were announced by the Union Home Ministry on Saturday. The biggest lockdown in the world started in India on March 25, to contain the spread of coronavirus. But with the economy ripped apart, gradual relaxations were given. Here are more details.
Bengal opened religious places, some states are waiting
In the first phase, hotels, restaurants, and other hospitality services, as well as malls, religious places were permitted to open from June 8. But West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee permitted religious places to open from today itself. However, not more than 10 people were allowed to gather. Meanwhile, religious places will open in Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh from June 8.
Monuments and museums were opened in Rajasthan
In Rajasthan, religious places and malls will remain shut, and restaurants can only offer takeaways and home deliveries. All government and private offices were permitted to operate with full strength from June 1. Private companies were asked to encourage remote working. Monuments and museums were opened today and entry made free for tourists for the first two weeks, reports said.
200 trains resumed services, states taking call on inter-state travel
Separately, from today, 200 trains (100 pairs) resumed services. These trains don't include Shramik special trains or the select AC trains which were pressed to service last month. States were permitted to decide on inter-state travel after understanding the on-ground situation. Notably, the BJP-led Karnataka government allowed inter-state travel but could restrict movement from some states. Chhattisgarh allowed inter/intra-state travel only for pass holders.
Dine-in allowed in Tamil Nadu but with riders
Karnataka, UP, and MP allowed malls to open from June 8, and in Chhattisgarh and Telangana shopping complexes will remain shut till June 7. In Tamil Nadu, non-AC restaurants were allowed to offer dine-in services from June 8, but with 50% strength. Bengal permitted tea gardens, jute mills, mining, and construction activities to resume work with 100% strength from today, June 1.
Outdoor physical activities allowed in Maharashtra
In Maharashtra, the worst-hit state, the lockdown was extended till June 30, but the government plans to open non-containment zones from June 3. In the first phase of "Mission Begin Again", outdoor activities like walking and running were allowed. Government offices can open with 15% strength and self-employed people like plumbers were allowed to work. Markets and cab aggregators will be allowed from June 5.
Delhi has closed its borders for a week
Meanwhile, Delhi has shut its borders for one week, in a bid to help the healthcare system deal with the spike in coronavirus cases. All markets and shops, including salons and barbershops, were allowed to open. However, spas will remain closed. The state government nullified its earlier order of letting only a specified number of people sit in autos, e-rickshaws, etc.
Petrol prices hiked in some states
Separately, in states like Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, petrol prices were hiked. From Rs. 76.31/liter the price of petrol in Mumbai was increased to Rs. 78.31/liter. Diesel's price stands at Rs. 68.21/liter as opposed to Rs. 66.21/liter earlier. The tax on petrol and diesel was increased by Rs. 2/liter and Rs. 1/liter respectively in J&K.