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Norms of the 21-day nationwide lockdown have not been relaxed in Assam: Assam CM Sonowal

He said that the lockdown will remain fully in force till April 14 as declared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier. The state government however took some measures to ensure availability of essential services and goods.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Mar 31, 2020, 09.15 PM IST
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The government added, “Around 2.7 lakh construction registered workers engaged in embankment construction will also get Rs 1000. Trucks carrying essential items will be allowed to ply.”
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Guwahat: Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said that norms of the 21-day nationwide lock down have not been relaxed in Assam by the State government.

He said that the lockdown will remain fully in force till April 14 as declared by Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier. The state government however took some measures to ensure availability of essential services and goods.

Sonowal said with an appeal to the people of the state to strictly follow the norms of social distancing and make the lockdown successful in the state.

Assam Industries and Commerce Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary stated that Government of India recently has issued guidelines on operation of food processing industries in the states and ordered that individual industry can apply for permission from the concerned authorities during the lockdown period. As per the guidelines from the Central Government, now individual industry can apply for such permission from the concerned authorities.

In a statement the Minister stated that decision was taken by the Cabinet on March 30, on easing curbs imposed due to the national lockdown with regards to reopening of rice and flour mills, biscuit and other food production units. It was decided that limited activities like spraying of pesticides and irrigation of tea plants in Tea Gardens may be allowed as well as farming activities in rural areas.

“In this regard, there was some miscommunication in social media that Assam Government was diluting the lockdown norms. But the Minister clarified that the lockdown has not been withdrawn, the basic idea was to allow limited activities as per discretion of respective Deputy Commissioners only after receipt of specific applications from industries in order to keep the food chain in minimal production levels and also in order to avert a possible food shortage crisis,” the minister stated.

He added, “All the activities shall depend on the application of the industry owners who apply to the respective Deputy Commissioners and after due scrutiny of the applications and in consultation with Health Department, the industries maybe be allowed to function with limited manpower. All the easing in curbs shall be with due permission of district authorities and as per accordance of Health Department norms of maintaining social distance to prevent community spreading of the Covid19 infection possibility”.

Assam cabinet which held its meeting on Monday announced a COVID-19 package which decided to allow agriculture and farming activity with necessary protection from April 1 onwards.

In statement the state government stated that that package will encompass over 70 lakh people. “ 58 lakh people under National food security Act (NFSA) will get free rice, non-card holders of NFSA will get Rs 1000. People in the tribal dominated areas will also get Rs 1000.”

The government added, “Around 2.7 lakh construction registered workers engaged in embankment construction will also get Rs 1000. Trucks carrying essential items will be allowed to ply.”
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