DPIIT in favour of resuming economic activity

`In a letter to home secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla, Guruprasad Mohapatra, secretary at the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), has urged the government to allow more industries to operate with reasonable safeguards even if the government decides to extend the nationwide lockdown. Albeit the lockdown is supposed to last till 14th April, it is being widely anticipated that it will be extended by at least two weeks with concessions to certain industries to restart economic activity.

Some of the safeguards that the department mentioned (based on interactions with the industry) in the letter for allowing firms to operate include ensuring a single entry point for workers, sufficient space for social distancing, use of separate transport for ferrying workers or stay arrangements within factory premises and high quality sanitization of premises.

“Free movement of all vehicles and manpower required for continuing the activities permitted so far under various MHA (ministry of home affairs) notifications needs to be allowed by all government authorities concerned with movement of man and material. We are facing a lot of problems on this and very clear reiteration of the MHA stand to allow free movement of vehicles and manpower in these sectors needs to be done,” Mohapatra wrote in his letter.

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