COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

Government of India is following a phase-wise unlocking of activities. In days to come, this would also involve partial resumption of activities in schools for students of classes 9th to 12th on a voluntary basis, for taking guidance from their teachers. This would be allowed from 21-09-2020.

Generic Preventive Measures

The generic preventive measures include simple public health measures that are to be followed to reduce the risk of COVID-19. These measures need to be observed by all (teachers, employees and students) in these places at all times.

These include:

  1. Physical distancing of at least 6 feet to be followed as far as feasible.
  2. Use of face covers/masks to be made mandatory.
  3. Frequent hand washing with soap (for at least 40-60 seconds) even when hands are not visibly dirty.

    Use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers (for at least 20 seconds) can be done wherever feasible.

  4. Respiratory etiquettes to be strictly followed. This involves strict practice of covering one’s mouth and nose while coughing/sneezing with a tissue/handkerchief/flexed elbow and disposing off used

    tissues properly.

  5. Self-monitoring of health by all and reporting any illness at the earliest.
  6. Spitting shall be strictly prohibited.
  7. Installation & use of Aarogya Setu App may be advised wherever feasible.

All schools (with classes IX to XII) shall specifically ensure the following arrangements

  1. Online/distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged.
  2. Students of class 9th to 12th shall be permitted to visit their school on voluntary basis for taking guidance from their teachers. This will be subject to written consent of their parents/guardians. Such visits and teacher – student interaction must be organized in a staggered manner.

After opening of the schools

At the entry point

  1. Entrance to have mandatory hand hygiene (sanitizer dispenser) and thermal screening provisions. Multiple gates/separate gates, if feasible, should be used for entry and exit.
  2. Only asymptomatic persons (teachers, employees and students) to be allowed in the premises. If a teacher/employee/student is found to be symptomatic, he/she should be referred to nearest health center.
  3. Posters/standees on preventive measures about COVID-19 to be displayed prominently.
  4. Proper crowd management in the parking lots, in corridors and in elevators – duly following physical distancing norms shall be organized.
  5. Entry of visitors should be strictly regulated/restricted.

SOP to be followed in case a student/teacher/employee develops symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty in breathing)

  1. Place the ill person in a room or area where they are isolated from others.
  2. Inform parents/guardians as the case may be.
  3. Patient will remain isolated while wearing a mask/face cover till such time they are examined by a doctor.
  4. Immediately inform the nearest medical facility (hospital/clinic) or call the state or district helpline.
  5. A risk assessment shall be undertaken by the designated public health authority (district RRT/treating physician) and accordingly further action be initiated regarding management of case, their contacts and need for disinfection.
  6. Disinfection of the premises to be taken up if the person is found positive.

Read the detailed notification here: FinalSOPonpartialresumptionofactivitiesinschools8092020


Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

[Notification dt. 08-09-2020]

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

The judicial and administrative works of Calcutta High Court to be suspended from 10.07.2020  to 13.07.2020 on account of new phase of lock down in Kolkata declaring considerable part of it as containment zones as also to conduct a thorough sanitization process in the 3(three) Buildings of Calcutta High Court.


Calcutta High Court

[Notification dt. 09-07-2020]

Case BriefsCOVID 19High Courts

Allahabad High Court: A Division Bench of Anil Kumar and Manish Mathur, JJ.,took cognizance of the Public Interest Litigation petition filed seeking enforcing of guidelines on social distancing and sanitisation in UP jails.

Petitioner sought direction to respondents to take proper steps and arrangements to ensure the meeting of inmates with their deponents, family members, friends and lawyers while insuring the guidelines of social distancing and proper sanitization in order to protect the fundamental Rights of the inmates.

Another direction that petitioner wanted to be directed to the respondents was to devise a mechanism to ensure social distancing and sanitization norms alongwith other safety measures so as to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Jails of Uttar Pradesh.

S.K. Singh and Anand Shikhar, Counsels for the respondents submitted that the present PIL is not maintainable and need a period of 10 days for filing the counter affidavit.

Matter to be listed on 15th June, 2020.[Shivam Pandey v. State of U.P., 2020 SCC OnLine All 695 , decided on 29-05-2020]

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

Guidelines for domestic travel (air/train/inter-state bus travel)

1) Dos and Don’ts shall be provided along with tickets to the travellers by the agencies concerned.

2) All passengers shall be advised to download Arogya Setu app on their mobile devices.

3) Suitable announcement about COVID-19 including precautionary measures to be followed shall be made at airports/railway station/bus terminals and in flights/trains/bus.

4) The States/UTs shall ensure that all passengers shall undergo thermal screening at the point of departure and only asymptomatic passengers are allowed to board the flight/train/bus.

5) During boarding and travel, all passengers shall use face covers/mask. They will also follow hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene and maintain environmental hygiene.

6) At airports/railway stations/ bus terminals required measures to ensure social distancing shall be taken.

7) Airports/railway stations/bus terminals should be regularly sanitized/disinfected and availability of soaps and sanitizers shall be ensured.

8) Thermal screening at exit point shall be arranged.

9) Asymptomatic passengers will be permitted to go with the advice that they shall self-monitor their health for 14 days. In case, they develop any symptoms, they shall inform the district surveillance officer or the state/national call center (1075).

10) Those found symptomatic will be isolated and taken to the nearest health facility. They will be assessed for clinical severity at the health facility.

11) Those having moderate or severe symptoms will be admitted to dedicated COVID Health facilities and managed accordingly.

12) Those having mild symptoms will be given the option of home isolation or isolated in the Covid Care Centre (both public & private facilities) as appropriate and tested as per ICMR protocol available at https://www.mohfw.gov.in/pdf/Revisedtestingguidelines.pdf.

If positive, they will continue in COVID Care Centre and will be managed as per clinical protocol.

If negative, the passenger may be allowed to go home, isolate himself/herself and self monitor his/her health for further 7 days. In case, any symptoms develop they shall inform the district surveillance officer or the state/national call center (1075).

NOTE: States can also develop their own protocol with regards to quarantine and isolation as per their assessment.


Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

[Press Release dt. 24-05-2020]

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

It is notified for all concerned that one of the Officers posted in General Administration section (Principal Bench) has been found Corona positive. He had last attended the office on 19.05.2020 and is presently hospitalized. All necessary protocols are being followed.

Contact tracing is in progress and high risk contacts shall be asked to self quarantine for 14 days.

The NGT (PB) premises shall remain under deep sanitization and with effect from 23.05.2020, no officer/staff/ lawyers/litigants/public shall be permitted to have access to the NGT (PB) premises.

Further decision shall be taken as per advice of health authorities on 25.05.2020.

Access the notification here: NOTIFICATION


National Green Tribunal

[Notification dt. 22-05-2020]

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi interacted with the Chief Ministers of all the States and UTs in the country to discuss the road ahead in India’s fight against COVID-19.

In his opening remarks the Prime Minister said, “We now have reasonably clear indication as to the geographical spread of the pandemic in India, including the worst affected areas. Moreover, over the past few weeks, officials have understood operating procedures in a time such as this, right up to the District level.”

Prime Minister said that this understanding of the spread of COVID-19 will help the country in having a focussed fight against it.

“And therefore, we can now further focus our strategy in this battle against coronavirus, as should be the case. We have a twofold challenge – to reduce the transmission rate of the disease, and to increase public activity gradually, while adhering to all the guidelines, and we will have to work towards achieving both these objectives”, he said.

Prime Minister further said now the effort should be to stop the spread of the COVID-19 to rural areas.

The Prime Minister said the suggestions made by the States for a roadmap on Economy have been given due consideration.

The Chief Ministers appreciated the leadership of the Prime Minister in the country’s fight against COVID-19 and also highlighted the need to strengthen the medical and health infrastructure in the country. Several of them pointed out that with the return of migrants, there is a need to concentrate on strict implementation of the social distancing guidelines, usage of masks and sanitization in order to curb the spread through fresh infection, especially in rural areas.

The compulsory quarantining of the stranded Indians returning from abroad was also highlighted. The Chief Ministers in their suggestions on economy have sought support to MSMEs, Infrastructure projects like Power, easing of interest rates on loans and assured market access to the agricultural produce.

Prime Minister thanked the Chief Minister’s for their proactive role in the country’s fight against the COVID-19 and for their valuable suggestions emanating out of their grassroot level experience.

Prime Minister said that we must understand that the World has fundamentally changed post COVID-19. Now the World will be Pre-Corona, Post-Corona just like the case of the World Wars. And this would entail significant changes in how we function.

He said the new way of life would be on the principle of “Jan Se lekar Jag Tak”, from an individual to the whole of humanity.

He said we must all plan for the new reality.

“Even as we look at the gradual withdrawal of the lockdown, we should constantly remember that till we do not find a vaccine or a solution, the biggest weapon with us to the fight the virus is social distancing”, he said.

Prime Minister reaffirmed the importance of Do Gaz Ki doori and added that suggestion of night curfew raised by many CMs would surely reaffirm the feeling of caution among people.

He requested all the Chief Ministers for specific feedback lockdown.

“I request you all to share with me by 15th May, a broad strategy on how you each one of you would want to deal with the lockdown regime in your particular states. I want states to make a blue print on how to deal with various nuances during and after the gradual easing of the lockdown”, he said.

Prime Minister said, we will need an all-encompassing approach to deal with various challenges that will arise before us.With the onset of Monsoon, there will be proliferation of many non-COVID19 diseases, for which we must prepare and strengthen our medical and health systems.

He asked the policy makers to also keep in mind how to embrace new models of teaching and learning in the education sector.

Referring to Tourism the Prime Minister said he saw potential for domestic tourism but we need to think of the contours of the same.

He said, “I am of the firm view that the measures needed in the first phase of lockdown were not needed during the 2nd phase and similarly the measures needed in the 3rd Phase are not needed in the fourth.”

Referring to the resumption of train Services, the Prime Minister said, this is needed to rev up the economic activity, but said that all the routes will not be resumed. Prime Minister said only a limited number of trains would ply.

The Prime Minister said he continues to feel optimistic, when not even a single state sounded despondent and that this collective determination will make India win in its fight against COVID-19.

PM said that the Post-COVID era also brings opportunities that India must leverage.


Prime Minister’s Office

Case BriefsCOVID 19High Courts

Patna High Court: A Division Bench of Anil Kumar Sinha and Dinesh Kumar Singh, JJ., addressed a petition with regard non-provision of food and other medical facilities to leprosy patients during the present Lockdown due to COVID-19.

Petition sought issuance of direction to State of Bihar with regard to providing leprosy patients food grains, cooked food, medical facilities, provision of sanitization and to create a hygienic atmosphere for living in their residential area.

Counsel for the petitioner, Gautam Kejriwal submitted that leprosy patients are neither getting proper cooked food/food grains nor medical facilities nor the sanitation facilities nor proper living atmosphere, particularly, during present pandemic COVID-19, as a result, their living has become hazardous. Instead the leprosy patients with rations card are inly being provided food grains

Court asked for a comprehensive report from Member Secretary, Bihar State Legal Services Authority to get a report from the Secretaries of all the District Legal Service Authorities with regard to legal aid, financial aid/transfer of money under various schemes, distribution of food grains, medical and sanitization facilities provided to leprosy patients as well as living conditions of such leprosy patients.

Chief Secretary, Government of Bihar to monitor the present situation, particularly, the issue of the supply of food grains/cooked food/clean drinking water including the medical facilities to leprosy patients.

Matter to be listed on 14-05-2020.[Sam Uttan v. Union of India, 2020 SCC OnLine Pat 523, decided on 04-05-2020]

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

In continuation of the Office Memorandum of even number dated 16th April, 2020 drawing attention to Ministry of Home Affairs’ consolidated guidelines regarding functioning of offices from 20th April, 2020, all officers/officials are advised to take following precautionary measures in order to contain spread of COVID-19:

 (i)  Must use reusable/cloth face cover

(ii)  Ensure proper cleaning and frequent sanitization of the workplace, particularly of the frequently touched surfaces.

(iii) Cover your nose and mouth with handkerchief/tissue while sneezing and coughing.

(iv) Maintain personal hygiene and physical distancing.

(v) Strict disinfection protocols should be followed  in the building/room as per guidelines.

(vi) Practice frequent hand washing with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand rub/sanitizers. 

(vii) Seating arrangement in Sections/rooms adequate distance between officials in the rooms.

(viii) Gathering especially in canteens must be avoided.

(ix) Gathering of 5 or more persons at any place in the office should be avoided.

(x) Discourage, to the maximum extent, entry of visitors in the office complex. Routine issue of visitors/temporary passes has already been suspended. Only Those visitors who have proper permission of the officer, whom they want to meet, should be allowed after being properly screened.

(xi) Meetings should be done through video conferencing only.

(xii) Undertake essential correspondence on official email and avoid sending physical files and documents to other offices, to the extent possible.

(xiii) Facilitate delivery and receipt of dak at the entry point itself of the office building, as far as possible.

(XIV) All officials are advised to take care of their own health and look out for symptoms such as fever, respiratory problem and, if feeling unwell, should leave the workplace immediately after informing their reporting officers.

(xv) Such employees should observe home-quarantine as per the guidelines issued by MOH&FW, Government of India.

(xvi) The leave sanctioning authorities are advised to sanction leave whenever any request is made for self-quarantine as a precautionary measure.

(xvii) All employees who are at higher risk i.e. older employees, pregnant employees and employees who have underlying medical conditions should take extra precautions. These employees should not be exposed to any front-line work requiring direct contact with the public.

Employees residing in notified containment zones are advised to follow the guidelines of the local authorities regarding movement in these zones and should join office only when such conditions are relaxed by the local authorities concerned.

Employees advised to strictly follow the above mentioned measures.

Access the Official Memorandum here: OFFICIAL MEMORANDUM


Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

[Office Memorandum dt. 19-04-2020]