All states and union territories have been ordered to strictly enforce national directives on the management of the coronavirus pandemic, the Centre informed the Delhi High Court on Saturday, responding to a notice over violation of anti-Covid rules in the unlocking national capital.
“MHA issued order dated 29.06.2021..directing state/Union Territory governments and state/Union Territory Authorities to consider the implementation of targeted and prompt actions for COVID-19 management till 31.07.07.2021 as conveyed vide aforesaid MoHFW advisory dated 28.06.2021 and also take necessary measures under the relevant provisions of Disaster Management Act, 2005,” the Centre said in its response filed as a status report.
“MHA also directed state/Union territories that National Directives for COVID-19 Management shall continue to be strictly followed throughout the country,” news agency PTI quoted the Centre as saying in the report.
The national directives for Covid management include covering face, maintaining social distance, working from home, staggered timings at workplaces, not spitting in public places and maintaining hygiene.
The Centre said in the report that allowing economic activities was essential, but the decision to impose or ease restrictions has to be based on the assessment of the ground situation.
The Centre informed the court it had shared “framework for implementation of prompt and target action” with states. The framework talks of a five-fold strategy to combat the pandemic – testing, tracking, treating, vaccination and adherence to Covid-appropriate behaviour.
In June, the court had pointed out violation of Covid rules at market areas in the national capital and said such behaviour would hasten a possible third wave of the coronavirus.
“We have paid a huge price in the second wave. We don’t know if there is any household which has not suffered in the second wave, closely or remotely,” the bench had observed, adding, “We as a citizen of this city are worried when we see these images”.
The court had issued notices to the Centre and the Delhi government seeking status reports on the reopening of business activities.
Since the court’s remarks, several markets have been ordered shut by the administration for different duration over ignoring the rules.
With inputs from PTI