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Govt makes a U-turn, stops sale of non-essential items through e-commerce platforms

New Delhi: The government on Sunday prohibited the sale of non-essential items through e-commerce platforms during the ongoing lockdown, four days after allowing such companies to sale mobile phones, refrigerators and ready-made garments.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla issued an order excluding the non-essential items from sale by the e-commerce companies from the consolidated revised guidelines, which listed the exemption given to the services and people from the purview of the lockdown.

The Centre on Sunday allowed e-commerce companies and the vehicles used by operators of these units to supply only essential goods subject to “necessary permission” during the lockdown.

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Supply of non-essential goods by e-commerce companies will remain prohibited during the 19-day lockdown ending May 3.

In continuation of consolidated lockdown guideline issued on March 15 and March 16, the Ministry of Home Affairs issued the fresh guideline on Sunday, stating the states and the Union Territories (UTs) implement the same with immediate effect under the Disaster Management rules.

“E-commerce companies, vehicles used by e-commerce operators will be allowed to ply with necessary permissions,” the fresh guideline mentions.

Also Read: COVID-19: Disinfectant Spraying On People Harmful, Says Health Ministry

The previous order had said such items were allowed for sale through e-commerce platforms from April 20. However, the reason for reversing the order is not known immediately.

The fresh guideline was issued as the first phase of 21-day lockdown period was extended by 19 days by the Prime Minister in the wake of growing cases of novel coronavirus which has claimed 507 deaths in India.

(With Agency Inputs)

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