Ease inter-state movement of people , remove restrictions at borders ; ASSOCHAM urges States

New Delhi : Restrictions on inter-state movement of people at state borders are coming in the way of uptick in the economic activities, ASSOCHAM said today, emphasizing on gradual and smooth easing of lockdown on the industry and trade in all but containment zones.

”Several states are not allowing private vehicles from other states. While the metro cities are in one state, the adjoining sub-urban centres which have come up as major centres for corporate offices, including the back-end units of the global companies are located in the adjoining states. It is true that a large number of companies have made the ‘Work From Home’ a pre-dominant feature, they do need minimum staff for some critical jobs in offices and work places. But, against the spirit of the lockdown 4.0 of more relaxations, some of the states are disallowing movement of people,” ASSOCHAM Secretary General Mr Deepak Sood said.

He said, in the last 56 days of the lockdown, enough data base has been generated. Hot spots and containment zones have been well identified. “Strict restrictions in the containment zones are well understood and must be enforced. However, the movement for rest of the population should be eased and a better understanding reached amongst the bordering states. Besides the white and blue collar work force for Corporate India, a large segment of informal trade should be enabled to pick up thread again with social distancing norms.

He said, while the new Central guidelines have allowed private vehicles, the mutual consent of states is required as regards the inter-state movement is concerned. “This is becoming difficult. Concerns of states where the Covid-19 cases are less, are understandable because of fear of infections spreading. However, the data base and technology should be leveraged to check the infection”.

Mr Sood said, as the realisation dawns on the society that “we must to learn to live with the new normal”, lot more use of technology and smoother implementation of the safety Standard Operating Procedures and civil rules , are required.

While reports of inter-state restrictions are coming from across the country, the ASSOCHAM would urge all the states to facilitate the revival of the economic activities , even if it is done in a gradual manner. ”The Centre is also urged to impress upon the states for resolving the border bottlenecks on the most urgent basis,” Mr Sood said.

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