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Odishatv Bureau

New Delhi: Following instances of violations of lockdown 4.0 norms at various places, the Centre on Thursday directed states and UTs to "scrupulously adhere" to all measures on restrictions mandated by the Ministry of Home Affairs or laid down by them.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla in a letter to all Chief Secretaries emphasized that MHA guidelines should be strictly implemented and authorities in states and UTs should take necessary steps to ensure the implementation.

"I would request all the Chief Secretaries of states and administrators of UTs to remain vigilant in the fight against COVID-19 and ensure that all measures that have either been mandated by MHA, or laid down by the states and UTs, are scrupulously adhered to at all levels," the order says.

The authorities have been directed to clearly delineate containment zones and effectively implement containment measures within these zones, as a key to preventing the spread of novel coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic.

In this context, the Home Secretary advised the states and the UTs to follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) and "properly demarcate containment zones".

States and UTs have been told to delineate various zones and decide on the activities to be prohibited or allowed with restrictions in accordance with the MHA guidelines issued on Sunday with fresh measures wherein, apart from activities specifically prohibited, all other activities have been permitted, except in containment zones.

The Home Secretary stressed the significance of the night curfew, which prohibits all non-essential activities between 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. He directed the states to ask the local authorities to issue orders in the entirety of their jurisdiction, under proper provisions of law, for imposition of night curfew which has been mandated with a view to ensuring that people observe social distancing to check the spread of infection.

"Strict compliance of these orders should be ensured by the local authorities."

The order mentioned that the national directives for COVID-19 management should be followed throughout the country and stipulations such as wearing of face covers, ensuring social distancing at work, transport and public places, maintaining hygiene and sanitisation are important for containing the spread of COVID-19, protecting individuals and community.

It is the duty of all district and local authorities to enforce the national directive, the order said.

The new guidelines were issued for the lockdown 4.0 which was extended for another two weeks till May 31 from May 18 to contain the deadly virus.

The guidelines have allowed several activities to boost the economy.

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