After remaining closed since March 24 in the wake of countrywide lockdown restrictions, private offices will be allowed to open during the latest round of lockdown, which will go on till May 17. "Private offices can operate with upto 33% strength as per requirement, with the remaining persons working from home," the government order released by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said.
The order was made in the context of non-hotspots areas in orange zones as well as green zones, and offices in 'non-containment' areas in red zones. The government offices in all the three zones have been exempted from any restrictions, says the MHA order.
Masks have been made mandatory in private offices as well as public spaces, as per the order.
"Most of the commercial and private establishments have been allowed in the Red Zones. These include print and electronic media, IT and IT-enabled services, data and call centres, cold storage and warehousing services, private security and facility management services, and services provided by self-employed persons, except for barbers etc., as mentioned earlier," said the government order.
"Manufacturing units of essential goods, including drugs, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, their raw material and intermediates; production units, which require continuous process, and their supply chain; Jute industry with staggered shifts and social distancing; and manufacturing of IT hardware and manufacturing units of packaging material will continue to be permitted," it added.
"All Government offices shall function with senior officers of the level of Deputy Secretary and above at full strength, and the remaining staff attending upto 33% as per requirement. However, Defense and Security services, Health and Family Welfare, Police, Prisons, Home Guards, Civil Defence, Fire and Emergency Services, Disaster management and related services, National Informatics Centre (NIC), Customs, Food Corporation of India (FCI), National Cadet Corps (NCC), Nehru Yuvak Kendra (NYK) and Municipal services shall function without any restrictions; delivery of public services shall be ensured and necessary staff will be deployed for such purpose," read the MHA order.