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Calibrated and zone wise lifting of lockdown on the cards


New Delhi, Apr 13: The government has intensified efforts to finalise the guidelines to ahead of April 14, the last day of the lockdown. While it is clear that the lockdown would continue, several measures are being taken to also revive the economy.

Calibrated and zone wise lifting of lockdown on the cards

The idea is to make the lockdown more calibrated when compared to the first phase, officials working on the guidelines tell OneIndia.

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One of the major concerns was raised by the Ministry of Commerce. The Ministry has raised concerns with the Ministry of Home Affairs regarding the movement of vehicles carrying essential supplies. There is a need to enable such movement if the lockdown has to continue and remain successful the MHA was told.

Further, the Commerce Ministry has said that several manufacturing units need to be opened up. These would include automobiles, textiles and industries manufacturing electronic goods. Further, a suggestion to open up smaller companies with export commitments was also made. However, the Ministry said that these industries must operate with minimal staff and proper sanitation has to be in place.

In all probability, the Centre may classify the country into three zones while announcing the guidelines. Chief Minister of Haryana, Manohar Lal Khattar said that the state would be divided into three zones while lifting the restrictions.

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The PM has held several meetings with the top brass in the past one week to discuss the lockdown and the measures to be taken post-April 14. Two key considerations were considered during these deliberations, officials familiar with the development told OneIndia. There is the question of life and there is livelihood and both are equally important.

Officials said that the lockdown needed to be lifted in a staggered manner as it had to be ensured that India goes not go into negative growth. Most officials said that a balance had to be struck in a situation such as this. Lives have to be saved, but it was also important to revive economic activity, officials told the PM.

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Officials suggested that in order to revive economic activity, the nation had to be divided into three zones. The red zone would be the one with the most number of coronavirus cases and these zones would remain locked down. In the yellow zone, where a limited number of cases are reported, activity would resume, but the movement would be heavily monitored. In the green zones, where no coronavirus activity is reported, the officials suggested that normalcy should return.

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