The second phase of the lockout in India will end on May 3. The central government gave several indications on Wednesday, April 29. Impoverished migrant workers who lost their much-needed earnings due to lockouts across the country have been given the freedom to return to their home state. At present, they will be sent to buses which will be sanitized and social distemper will also be followed. All workers will also be screened for COVID-19 and will be sent to buses with no symptoms. There is also a possibility of re-examination after arriving at the destination. Several states are said to have also demanded rail facilities for the travel of laborers. There are millions of migrant workers stranded in the corner of the country, and more workers will be sent on trains than buses, but the central government has not yet allowed it.

Apart from migrant laborers, it has also been allowed to return home to pilgrims, tourists, students, etc. These discounts will not be applicable to hotspots and entertainment areas. At present, the Health Ministry has declared 129 districts out of 736 districts in the country as hotspots. Buses and drivers may take time to arrange, so this activity is expected to start immediately across the country. However, states like Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh had already started bringing workers in buses a week ago. In addition, the Home Ministry also announced on Wednesday that as the situation in the country is very good due to the lockout, new guidelines will be issued from May 4 under which several districts will be given a variety of concessions.

Obviously, the lockout may continue after May 3, but there will be a variety of exemptions in areas where there are no hotspots. The state governments will also take their own decisions on exemptions. Punjab has decided to extend the lockout till May 17 but has also said that the restrictions will be relaxed from 7 am to 11 pm daily after May 3. Lockouts and restrictions are gradually being relaxed in many countries of the world. Experts worry that doing so will not make the infection suddenly spread again, but governments are saying that adequate precautions will also be taken to relax the restrictions.

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