New Delhi: With lockdown 3.0 ending tonight, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), on Sunday, is expected to release fresh guidelines for the fourth-phase of the coronavirus-induced lockdown that begins from May 18. Earlier on Tuesday, PM Modi had announced that lockdown 4 will have a ‘completely different form’, with new rules. Also Read - Nearly 8,000 COVID-19 Cases in Last 24 Hours Take India's Tally Past 1.70 Lakh; Death Toll Nears 5,000 | Key Points
Notably, the nationwide lockdown was first announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24 in a bid to combat the coronavirus spread. On April 14, he extended the lockdown till May 3. It was then again extended to May 17, with certain relaxations in orange and green zones (less COVID-19 affected areas). Also Read - Leicester City Manager Brendan Rodgers Tests Positive For Coronavirus
Earlier on Friday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah held several meetings with his ministry’s officials, including Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla, ahead of the announcement of guidelines for lockdown 4.0. Also Read - Trump Bans Entry of Certain Groups of Chinese Students to US
It has been said that greater relaxations and flexibility will be seen in the lockdown 4.0, which will begin on Monday, with gradual reopening of railways and domestic airlines while powers will the given to states and union territories to define COVID-19 hotspots.
However, 30 municipal areas have been identified for stricter measures. The selected municipal areas are: Brihanmumbai or Greater Mumbai, Greater Chennai, Ahmedabad, Thane, Delhi, Indore, Pune, Kolkata, Jaipur, Nashik, Jodhpur, Agra, Tiruvallur, Aurangabad, Cuddalore, Greater Hyderabad, Surat, Chengalpattu, Ariyalur, Howrah, Kurnool, Bhopal, Amritsar, Villupuram, Vadodara, Udaipur, Palghar, Berhampur, Solapur and Meerut.
Here how the fourth phase of lockdown will be different from first three phases:
Green and orange zones can open completely, except schools, theatres, malls, gyms.
Public transport might resume services except in containment zones.
Special train services will go on as proposed by the Indian railways for migrants and stranded passengers.
Domestic flights may resume operation.
Parlour, salons will open — not in containment zones.
Religious institutions will open but large gatherings will be prohibited.
Delhi Metro may resume operations in select areas.
Flipkart, Amazon and other e-commerce platforms may be allowed to deliver non-essential items, barring the containment zones.