(Juhi Aishwary, Journalist): Lockdown in the country has been increased once again due to the Coronavirus. This time in the fourth phase, the central government has extended the lockdown till May 31. At the same time, the lockdown has already been announced in many states. The new guidelines have been released once again by the Ministry of Home Affairs. So what should a common man take care of due to the lockdown starting today? Also, it is clearly stated in the guidelines that you can be punished for violating the lockdown.

Additional Workplace Instructions

  • As far as possible ensure the habit of work from home
  • Ensure availability of thermal scanning, hand wash and sanitizer at all entry and exit gates and common areas
  • Keep sanitizing the entire workplace, sanitize public facilities, and all the places that come in human contact like door handles, etc.
  • Have the person in charge at the workplace follow the physical distance, keep sufficient distance between the workers, the middle of the two shifts and the distance between the staff during the lunch break

Restrictions rights given to state governments

Rule number eight of the Guidelines issued by the Center states that the State Governments can stop the activities by assessing what other activities are not allowed in the classified zones. That is, the Center has given more rights to the State Governments in Lockdown-4 than the previous three lockdowns regarding activities.

Countrywide Guidelines for COVID-19

  • A Mandatory covering of the face in public and workplaces
  • Physical distance will be followed during public places and transportation
  • Consumption of alcohol, paan, gutkha, tobacco in public places is not allowed
  • Body distance has to be followed at the funeral and a maximum of 20 people will be able to go.
  • The shops have to be kept at a distance of 6 feet and there should not be more than 5 people
  • Spitting on public and workplace punishable with fine, this may be under the law and determined by the State / UT.
  • Adherence to physical distance will have to be ensured at the wedding ceremony and no more than 50 guests will be allowed.

What will happen if the lockdown breaks?

Every person needs to follow the lockdown. Anybody who deliberately doesn’t follow the lockdown then action will be taken against you according to the Disaster Management Act, 2005. Sections 51 to 60 under the Act describe what can happen if you violate the lockdown.

Section 51- Punishment for obstructing people who do not follow the instructions of the Central Government or State Government or the concerned authority under this Act or those who try to obstruct the work of the officers and employees of the Central, State, or other concerned authority. Maybe punished with one year sentence or fine or both.

Section 52-  If a person makes a false claim to get any kind of benefit, he can be punished with a maximum of two years in jail and a fine can also be imposed.

Section 53- Embezzlement of money or material if a person misappropriates money or material for the disaster, a maximum penalty of two years and fine can be imposed.

Section 54- Giving false warning if a person spreads any false warning related to the disaster, then he can be punished with imprisonment for one year and fine.

Section 55- If a crime is committed by a government department, then the head of that department will be deemed guilty and action will be taken against him if he does not prove that the crime happened without his knowledge and any contribution thereto.

Section 56- Failure to perform duty or connivance on violation of the act, if any officer does not perform his duty properly or excludes himself from it, he can be punished with imprisonment for one year or fine.

Section 57- In case of violation of orders of necessity, if a person disobeys orders given under Section-65, and then he can be punished with a maximum of one year in jail or fine.

Section 58- If a crime is committed by a company, then the company, every member who has committed the offense and who had the responsibility at that time, shall be deemed responsible. They will also be prosecuted.

Section 59- The previous sanction for prosecution shall not be imposed without prior approval of the authorized officer prosecuting for offenses under sections 55 and 56 of this Act.

Section 60- Cognition of offenses No court shall take cognizance of any offense other than the complaint made under this Act. However, it depends on a few things.

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