Tonight, Prime Minister Modi announced that effective midnight tonight, India would be under a nation-wide lockdown for the next 21 days. While doing so, the PM said such drastic measures were necessary to defeat coronavirus.
Of course such a pronouncement has led to much confusion among the public. The Home Affairs Ministry announced the list of essential services that will remain open.
All commercial establishments will remain closed with the exceptions of shops dealing with foods, groceries, fruits and vegetables, dairy and milk booths and meat and fish.
Banks and ATMs would also remain open. Dispensaries and chemist shops, both private and public, will remain open during the lockdown.
The Prime Minister himself tweeted about it to allay fears of the public.
My fellow citizens,— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 24, 2020
THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO NEED TO PANIC.
Essential commodities, medicines etc. would be available. Centre and various state governments will work in close coordination to ensure this.
Together, we will fight COVID-19 and create a healthier India.
Also, all transport services will remain suspended, with the exceptions of transportation for essential goods, fire, law and order and emergency services.
The MHA also released a list of guidelines for penalties and offences during the 21-day lockdown.