Press Information Bureau
Government of India
MHA clarifies on ground level issues being faced by States in ensuring smooth flow of
supply chain of Essential Items during National Lockdown to fight
States advised to inform District authorities and field agencies regarding the
Clarifications so as to avoid any ambiguity at the ground level
New Delhi, April 3, 2020 Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had issued consolidated guidelines on the lockdown measures to be taken by Ministries/ Departments of Government of India, State/Union Territory Governments and State/ Union Territory Authorities for containment of
At the ground level different interpretations are being made on the items given exceptions, which hinder smooth flow of supply chain of these essential items. Suggestions have also been received from some quarters in regard to these Guidelines. In view of these developments, Union Home Secretary, Shri Ajay Kumar Bhalla has written to all State Chief Secretaries clarifying on ground level issues being faced by States in ensuring smooth flow of supply chain of essential items during national lockdown to fight
Taking the case of “laboratories”, the communication clarifies that they have been exempted from lockdown restrictions. This includes the testing laboratories in the private sector for
Coming to daily essentials, the communication states that exceptions to sale (including through
In order to further streamline supplies of essential goods, following clarifications are issued:-
i)Queries have been received as to what constitutes food and grocery. Since it is neither feasible nor desirable to mention each item of food and grocery in the guidelines, the State/UT Governments have been advised to interpret these terms to mean all items of food and grocery that are usually consumed by people on day to day basis.
ii)Production, warehousing and transport of essential goods are included under exceptions in the guidelines and the district authorities are issuing individual passes to businesses covered in the exempted category. Difficulties in getting passes are, however, being faced by businesses having
iii)While operations of Railways, Airports and Seaports for cargo movement, relief and evacuation is allowed under the guidelines, difficulties are being faced in obtaining passes from district authorities in some cases. In order to address this and to accelerate unloading and mobility of goods across the country, it has been clarified that the designated authorities under Railways, Ports and Airports be allowed to issue passes for a critical mass of staff and contractual labour that are essential for such operations.
v)All movement of persons with the passes shall be subject to strict adherence to norms for hygiene and social distancing as is required in the context of COVID19.
The communication emphasizes that District authorities and field agencies may be informed on the above accordingly, so as to avoid any ambiguity at the ground level.