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Lockdown 2.0: Check New Guidelines for Agriculture Sector, Banks, ATMs & Other Financial Services

Tooba Maher
Tooba Maher
Lockdown 2.0 Guidelines

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) today i.e. on April 15 has issued revised guidelines for Covid-19 lockdown 2.0, in which, it has allowed certain sectors to function from 20 April to ease public hardship amid this deadly pandemic. Though, the air, rail & inter-state travel remains suspended, the government has allowed agricultural activities, health services & industries operating in rural areas to function.

As per the guidelines issued by the MHA for lockdown 2.0, "From 20 April activities permitted include agricultural, horticultural, procurement of agri products, 'mandis', farming. Shops of farm machinery, its spare parts, supply chain, repairs, 'Custom Hiring Centres' related to machinery will also function."

MHA has also listed out the services in financial sector that can remain functional. According to the order, important components of financial sector like Reserve Bank of India (RBI), banks, ATMs, debt markets & capital as notified by SEBI and the insurance companies will also remain functional.

These financial sector organisations will remain open during the lockdown 2.0

  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and financial markets and organisations regulated by the central bank like NPCI, CCIL, standalone primary dealers & payment system operators will remain open.

  • Bank branches & ATMs, IT vendors for banking operations, banking correspondents (BCs), ATM operations & cash management agencies will be functional.

  • Bank branches will be allowed to work according to the normal working hours till disbursal of cash through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) is complete.

  • Local administration to give adequate security personnel at bank branches & BCs to maintain social distancing law, order & staggering of account holders will be open.

  • SEBI, capital & debt market services notified by the SEBI will be functional.

  • Irdai & insurance companies will be working.

However, MHA has also listed several activities that are prohibited during lockdown 2.0. The revised guidelines of 2.0 lockdown will not apply in containment zones, as demarcated by states, UTs and district administration. If any new area is included in the category of containment zone, the activities allowed in that area till the time of its categorization as a containment zone, will be suspended except for those activities as are specifically permitted under the guidelines of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

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