As per the latest order by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Friday, the centre  has approved all registered shops to open from today. It has exempted all registered shops selling non-essential items from the revised lockdown restrictions issued on April 15.

However, for e-commerce,the order has clarified that sale by e-commerce companies will continue to be permitted for essential goods only.

Precautionary measures to be followed:

The MHA statement has given a nod to shops in market complexes outside municipality areas to continue work with a maximum of 50 per cent staff during the ongoing lockdown. The order also instructs that the mandatory precautions such as social distancing norms and wearing masks should be followed strictly.

The MHA statement also states that the order applies only to the local shops registered with the municipal corporation. “In Sub-clause 1 (x), the term ‘shopping complexes’ is replaced with ‘market complexes within the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities,” the order reads.

However, shops in multi-brand and single-brand malls have still not been exempted and will remain shut till May 3.

The shops that have been exempted from the current lockdown include neighbourhood shops and stand-alone shops; shops in residential complexes; those under municipal corporation and municipalities; and registered under the Shops and Establishment Act of the respective State/UTs.

Rural and Urban areas:

In rural areas, all shops, except those in shopping malls are allowed to open. In urban areas, all standalone shops, neighborhood shops & shops in residential complexes are allowed to open.  Shops in markets/market complexes and shopping malls are not allowed to open.

Additionally, the exemptions will not be given in hotspots and containment areas.

A day after the address by the Prime Minister on 14th April, the Ministry of Home Affairs issued an order outlining the list of activities that will be allowed after April 20, 2020. Meanwhile, the total coronavirus cases in India have surged to 24,506, including 775 deaths. As many as 5063 people have recovered so far, as per official figures.