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Section 144 in Maharashtra, only essential services allowed till May 1; public transport will be fully functional

The Maharashtra government has decided to impose restrictions under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in the State from April 14 to May 1 in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases.

According an order issued by Department of Disaster Management, Relief and Rehabilitation on Tuesday, no movement in public place will be allowed except for the reasons which are mentioned in the order.

Further, all services, establishments, public places and activities will remain closed except the essential ones mentioned in the order.

The order stated the following:

  • Restrictions under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to be imposed. It restricts meeting of groups of more than 4 people.
  • All establishments, public places, activities except those specified, to remain closed. Services and activities falling under the essential category are exempted to remain open from 7 am to 8 pm on working days.
  • Essential services include medical stores, hospitals, diagnostic centres, groceries, vegetable shops, dairies public transport, pre-monsoon activities by local authorities, Reserve Bank of India and services designated by RBI, ATMs etc.

Following offices are also included in exemption category list – offices of Central, State and local governments, including their statutory authorities and organisations, offices of companies providing essential services, offices of advocates if operations of courts, tribunals or commissions of enquiry are on.

The order also contained a list of guidelines to be followed by stores providing essential services. The other restrictions are:

  • Public transport will be fully operational with restrictions. Offenders will be imposed with a fine of Rs. 500 each.
  • Newspapers/ magazines/ periodicals can be printed and circulated. Only home delivery is allowed.
  • Restaurants, bars, hotels and roadside eatable vendors to remain closed for in-dining; no eating at the location except for those staying within the hotel, or the campus.
  • Only home delivery services shall be allowed and there will no visiting restaurant or bars for ordering purposes or pickup.
  • Cinema halls, amusement parks, beaches, gardens, open spaces, and other public places to remain closed.
  • Shooting for films, serials, advertisements is not allowed. Religious worship places to remain closed.
  • Barber shops, spas, salons, to remain closed.
  • Schools and colleges to remain closed.
  • No religious, social, cultural or political functions of any kind allowed. For election purposes permissions may be granted by the District Collector for political gatherings subject to conditions.
  • Marriages will be allowed with maximum of 25 people present.

The order will remain in force till 7 am of May 1, 2021 for containment of the COVID-19 epidemic in the State.

All fines collected shall be used by the concerned disaster management authority towards better containment and treatment of the COVID-19 disaster.

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Via Bar & Bench
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