A day before the crucial announcement of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the plan of the 21 days lockdown which ends on April 14 night, the Union Commerce Ministry has asked the Union Home Ministry to open industries and many business sectors with precautions to prevent the COVID-19. Demanding the opening up of industries with “single entry point for workers” and “keeping of social distancing” in “work atmosphere” the Commerce Ministry on April 11 said:
“However, it is felt that certain more activities with reasonable safeguards should be allowed once a final decision regarding extension and nature of lockdown is taken by the central Government. These new activities are essential to improve economic activity and provide liquidity in the hands of the people. These suggestions have been obtained on the basis of very detailed interaction of the Hon’ble CIM ( Commerce and Industries Minister Piyush Goyal) with various States and industry bodies, and the feedback ………..,” said the letter written by Dr.Guruprasad Mohapatra, Secretary, Dept. of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry to Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla.
The letter follows with three-page annexure of what all industries to be opened and what all precautions to be taken. The four-page letter is published below this article. Commerce Ministry suggested that Industries should be allowed to operate in shifts with 25-30 percent staff in each shift with proper social distancing, santisation methods for the staffers and premises. The Ministry also suggested that District level authorities must inspect on the working of the industries and check on the adherence of the rules to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Commerce Ministry suggested that big companies and MSMEs and export-oriented units must be opened. The Ministry also said that vehicle movement would be opened up with checking and factories must be asked to transport the staffers. The opening of telecom and allied sectors, fiber cable manufacturing, heavy electrical items, compressors, steel, defence, cement, pulp, timber, glass fertilizer, agro and agrochemical, paints, dyes, automotive, gems, jewelry, food and all kinds of beverages, and special economic zones were suggested by the Ministry.
The detailed four-page letter of Commerce & Industry Ministry for opening up Industries is published below:
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