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No Restriction on Inter-State Movement Despite Lockdown: the Centre

The Center has asked all States to ensure that during the current lockdown relaxation process, there is no restriction on the movement of persons and goods within a state and from one state to another.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla said in a letter sent to the chief secretaries of all states and union territories that there have been reports that movement at local level is being banned by various districts and States.

Drawing attention to the ‘Unlock-3’ guidelines, Bhalla said these restrictions create problems in the movement of goods and services between states and affect the supply chain. This creates obstacles to economic growth or job creation.

He said in the letter that the ‘unlock’ guidelines specifically specified that the movement of persons or objects within interstate and state should not be prohibited.

The Guidelines also state that no special authorization, clearance or e-permit for the movement of persons or goods for cross-border trade would be provided under the agreement with neighbouring countries.

The Home Secretary said these limitations are a breach of Ministry of Home Affairs guidelines under the 2005 Disaster Management Act provisions. The letter advises not to enforce the ban, and the ‘unlock’ requirements should be maintained.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared a March 25 lockdown to prevent the spread of infection with the Corona virus. It was later extended to 31 May. After this, the ‘unlock’ process began with the opening of industrial operations and offices throughout the country from 1 June.

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