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List of Government’s Revised “Lockdown Guidelines”: Know What’s Permitted, What’s Not

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list of revised guidlines for lockdown

New Delhi-Government of India issued an Order on 14th April 2020 that the lockdown measures stipulated in the Consolidated Guidelines of Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) for containment of COVID-19 epidemic in the country, will continue to remain in force upto 3rd May 2020.

In pursuance of the above-said order of Government of India, MHA has issued consolidated revised guidelines regarding lockdown measures to be taken by Ministries/Departments of Government of India, State/UT Governments for containment of COVID-19 epidemic in the country. The guidelines also prescribe National Directives for COVID-19 management; SOPs for Social Distancing at offices, workplaces, factories and establishments; and, penalties for offences regarding violation of lockdown measures under relevant sections of Disaster Management Act 2005 and IPC, 1860.

MHA has directed all the Ministries/Departments of Government of India and State Governments /Union Territory Administrations for the strict implementation of enclosed consolidated revised guidelines.

Note: Below Given Document has not been edited by Himachal Watcher. It was published as it was received from by the Union Government. 

List of Services to Remain Prohibited During Lockdown

With the extension of the lockdown period, the following activities will continue to remain prohibited across the country until 3rd May 2020:

  1. All domestic and international air travel of passengers, except for purposes enumerated in para 4 (ix), and for security purposes.
  2. All passenger movement by trains, except for security purposes.
  3. Buses for public transport.
  4. Metro rail services.
  5. Inter-district and inter-State movement of individuals except for medical reasons or for activities permitted under these guidelines.
  6. All educational, training, coaching institutions etc. shall remain closed.
  7. All industrial and commercial activities other than those specifically permitted
    under these guidelines.
  8. Hospitality services other than those specifically permitted under these guidlines
  9. Taxis (including auto-rickshaws and cycle rickshaws) and services of cab
  10. All cinema halls, malls, shopping complexes, gymnasiums, sports complexes, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places.
  11. All social/ political/ sports/ entertainment/ academic/ cultural/ religious
    functions/ other gatherings.
  12. All religious places/ places of worship shall be closed for public. Religious
    congregations are strictly prohibited.
  13. In case of funerals, congregation of more than twenty persons will not be

Operation of guidelines in Hotspots and containment zones

  1. `Hotspots’, areas of large COVID-19 outbreaks, or clusters with significant spread of COVID-19, will be determined as per the guidelines issued by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India (Gal).
  2. In these hotspots, containment zones will be demarcated by States/ UTs/ District administrations as per the guidelines of MoHFW.
  3. In these containment zones, the activities allowed under these guidelines will not be permitted. There shall be strict perimeter control in the area of the containment zones to ensure that there is no unchecked inward/ outward movement of population from these zones except for maintaining essential services (including medical emergencies and law and order related duties) and Government business continuity. The guidelines issued in this regard by MoHFW will be strictly implemented by State/ UT Governments and the local district authorities.

Services Permitted

Selected permitted activities allowed with effect from 20th April, 2020:

To mitigate hardship to the public, select additional activities have been allowed which will come into effect from 20th April, 2020. These limited exemptions will be operationalized by States/ UTs/ district administrations based on strict compliance to the existing guidelines. Also, before allowing these select additional activities. States/ UTs/ district administrations shall ensure that all preparatory arrangements with regard to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for social distancing in offices, workplaces, factories and establishments, as also other sectoral requirements are in place.

The consolidated revised guidelines incorporating these select permitted activities have been enumerated in paras 5-20 below.

Strict enforcement of the lockdown guidelines

State/ UT Governments shall not dilute these guidelines issued under the Disaster Management Act, 2005, in any manner, and shall strictly enforce the samee.

State/ UT Governments, may, however, impose stricter measures than these guidelines as per requirement of the local areas.

All health services (including AYUSH) to remain functional, such as:

  1. Hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, telemedicine facilities.
  2. Dispensaries, chemists, pharmacies, all kinds of medicine shops including Jan Aushadhi Kendras and medical equipment shops.
  3. Medical laboratories and collection centres.
  4. Pharmaceutical and medical research labs, institutions carrying out COVI 0-19 related research.
  5. Veterinary Hospitals, dispensaries, clinics, pathology labs, sale and supply of vaccine and medicine.
  6. Authorised private establishments, which support the provisioning of essential services, or efforts for containment of COVID-19, including home care providers, diagnostics, supply chain firms serving hospitals.
  7. Manufacturing units of drugs, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, medical oxygen, their packaging material, raw material and intermediates.
  8. Construction of medical/ health infrastructure including manufacture of  ambulances.
  9. Movement (inter and intra State, including by air) of all medical and veterinary personnel, scientists, nurses, para-medical staff, lab technicians, midwives and other hospital support services, including ambulances.

 Agricultural and related activities:

All agricultural and horticultural activities to remain fully functional, such as:

  1. Farming operations by farmers and farm workers in field.
  2. Agencies engaged in procurement of agriculture products, including MSP operations.
  3. ‘Mandis’ operated by the Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) or as notified by the State/ UT Government (e.g., satellite mandis).
  4. Direct marketing operations by the State/ UT Government or by industry directly from farmers/ group of farmers, FPOs’ co-operatives etc. States/ UTs may promote decentralized marketing and procurement at village level.
  5. Shops of agriculture machinery, its spare parts (including its supply chain) and repairs to remain open.
  6. ‘Custom Hiring Centres (CHC)’ related to farm machinery.
  7. Manufacturing, distribution and retail of fertilizers, pesticides and seeds.
  8. Movement (inter and Intra State) of harvesting and sowing related machines like combined harvester and other agriculture/ horticulture implements.

Fisheries – the following activities will be functional:

  1. Operations of the fishing (marine and inland)/ aquaculture industry, including feeding & maintenance, harvesting, processing, packaging, cold chain, sale and marketing.
  2. Hatcheries, feed plants, commercial aquaria.
  3. Movement of fish/ shrimp and fish products, fish seed/ feed and workers for all these activities.

Plantations- the following activities will be functional:

Operations of tea, coffee and rubber plantations, with maximum of 50% of workers

Processing, packaging, sale and marketing of tea, coffee, rubber and cashew, with maximum of 50% workers.

Animal husbandry — the following activities will be functional:

 Collection, processing, distribution and sale of milk and milk products by milk processing plants, including transport and supply chain.

  1. Operation of animal husbandry farms including poultry farms & hatcheries and livestock farming activity.
  2. Animal feed manufacturing and feed plants, including supply of raw material, such as maize and soya.
  3. Operation of animal shelter homes

 

Financial sector: following to remain functional:

  1. Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and RBI regulated financial markets and entities
  2. like NPCI, CCIL, payment system operators and standalone primary dealers.
  3. Bank branches and ATMs, IT vendors for banking operations, Banking
  4. Correspondents (BCs), ATM operation and cash management agencies.
  5. Bank branches be allowed to work as per normal working hours till disbursal of DBT cash transfers is complete.
  6. Local administration to provide adequate security personnel at bank branches and BCs to maintain social distancing. law and order and staggering of account holders.
  7. SEBI, and capital and debt market services as notified by the Securities and
  8. Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
  9. IRDAI and Insurance companies.

Social sector: following to remain functional:

  1. Operation of homes for children/ disabled/ mentally challenged/ seniorcitizens/ destitutes/ women/ widows.
  2. Observation homes, after care homes and places of safety for juveniles.
  3. Disbursement of social security pensions, e.g., old age/ widow/ freedom fighter pensions; pension and provident fund services provided by Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).
  4. Operation of Anganwadis — distribution of food items and nutrition once in 15 days at the doorsteps of beneficiaries, e.g., children, women and lactating mothers.

Online teaching/ distance learning to be encouraged:

  1. All educational, training, coaching institutions etc. shall remain closed.
  2. However, these establishments are expected to maintain the academic schedule through online teaching.
  3. Maximum use of Doordarshan (DD) and other educational channels may be made for teaching purposes.

MNREGA works to be allowed:

  1. MNREGA works are allowed with strict implementation of social distancing and face mask.
  2. Priority to be given under MNREGA to irrigation and water conservation works.
  3. Other Central and State sector schemes in irrigation and water conservation sectors may also be allowed to be implemented and suitably dovetailed with MNREGA works.

Public utilities: following to remain functional:

  1. Operations of Oil and Gas sector, including refining, transportation, distribution, storage and retail of products, e.g., petrol, diesel, kerosene, CNG, LPG, PNG etc.
  2. Generation, transmission and distribution of power at Central and State/ UT
  3. Postal services, including post offices.
  4. Operations of utilities in water, sanitation and waste management sectors, at municipal/ local body levels in States and UTs.
  5. Operation of utilities providing telecommunications and Internet services.

 Movement, loading/ unloading of goods/ cargo (inter and intra State) is allowed, as under:

  1. All goods traffic will be allowed to ply.
  2. Operations of Railways: Transportation of goods and parcel trains.
  3. Operations of Airports and related facilities for air transport for cargo movement, relief and evacuation.
  4. Operations of Seaports and Inland Container Depots (ICDs) for cargo transport, including authorized custom clearing and forwarding agents.

 

  1. Operations of Land Ports for cross land border transportation of essential goods, including petroleum products and LPG, food products, medical
  2. Movement of all trucks and other goods/ carrier vehicles with two drivers and one helper subject to the driver carrying a valid driving license; an empty truck/ vehicle will be allowed to ply after the delivery of goods, or for pick up of Shops for truck repairs and dhabas on highways, with a stipulated minimum distance as prescribed by the State/ UT authorities.
  3. Movement of staff and contractual labour for operations of railways, airports/ air carriers, seaports/ ships/ vessels.
  4. Landports and ICDs is allowed on passes being issued by the local authority on the basis of authorizations issued by the respective designated authority of the railways, airports, seaports, landports and 1CDs.

Supply of essential goods is allowed, as under:

  1. All facilities in the supply chain of essential goods, whether involved in manufacturing, wholesale or retail of such goods through local stores, large brick and mortar stores or e-Commerce companies should be allowed to operate, ensuring strict social distancing without any restriction on their timing of opening and closure.
  2. Shops (including Kirana and single shops selling essential goods) and carts, including ration shops (under PDS), dealing with food and groceries (for daily use), hygiene items, fruits and vegetables, dairy and milk booths, poultry, meat and fish, animal feed and fodder etc, should be allowed to operate, ensuring strict social distancing without any restriction on their timing of opening and closure.
  3. District authorities may encourage and facilitate home delivery to minimize the
    movement of individuals outside their homes.

Commercial and private establishments, as listed below, will be allowed to operate:

  1. Print and electronic media including broadcasting, DTH and cable services.
  2. IT and IT enabled Services, with upto 50% strength.
  3. Data and call centres for Government activities only.
  4. Government approved Common Service Centres (CSCs) at Gram Panchayat
  5. E-commerce companies. Vehicles used by e-commerce operators will be allowed to ply with necessary permissions.
  6. Courier services.
  7. Cold storage and warehousing services, including at ports, airports, railway stations, container Depots, individual units and other links in the logistics
  8. Private security services and facilities management services for maintenance and upkeep of office and residential complexes.
  9. Hotels, homestays, lodges and motels, which are accommodating tourists and persons stranded due to lockdown, medical and emergency staff, air and sea
  10. Establishments used/ earmarked for quarantine facilities.
  11. Services provided by self-employed persons, e.g., electrician, IT repairs, plumbers, motor mechanics, and carpenters.

 

Industries/ Industrial Establishments (both Government and private), as listed below, will be allowed to operate:

  1. Industries operating in rural areas, i.e., outside the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities.
  2. Manufacturing and other industrial establishments with access control in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and Export Oriented Units (EoUs), industrial estates, and industrial townships. These establishments shall make arrangements for stay of workers within their premises as far as possible and/ or adjacent buildings and for implementation of the Standard operating protocol (SOP) as referred to in para 21 (ii) below. The transportation of workers to workplace shall be arranged by the employers in dedicated transport by ensuring social distancing.
  3. Manufacturing units of essential goods, including drugs, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, their raw material and intermediates.
  4. Food processing industries in rural areas, i.e., outside the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities.
  5. Production units, which require continuous process, and their supply chain.
  6. Manufacturing of IT hardware.
  7. Coal production, mines and mineral production, their transportation, supply of explosives and activities incidental to mining operations.
  8. Manufacturing units of packaging material.
  9. Jute industries with staggered shifts and social distancing.
  10. Oil and gas exploration/ refinery.
  11. Brick kilns in rural areas i.e., outside the limits of municipal corporations.

Construction activities, listed as below, will be allowed to operate:

  1. Construction of roads, irrigation projects, buildings and all kinds of industrial projects, including MSMEs, in rural areas, i.e., outside the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities; and all kinds of projects in industrial estates.
  2. Construction of renewable energy projects.
  3. Continuation of works in construction projects, within the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities, where workers are available on site and no workers are required to be brought in from outside (in situ construction).

Movement of persons is allowed in the following cases:

  1. Private vehicles for emergency services, including medical and veterinary and for procuring essential commodities. In such cases, one passenger besides the private vehicle driver can be permitted in the backseat, in case of four-wheelers; however, in case of two-wheelers, only the driver of the vehicle is to be permitted.
  2. All personnel travelling to place of work and back in the exempted categories, as per the instructions of the State/ UT local authority.

 

Offices of the Government of India, its Autonomous/ Subordinate Offices will remain open, as mentioned below:

  1. Defence, Central Armed Police Forces, Health and Family Welfare, Disaster management and Early Warning Agencies (IMD, INCOIS, SASE and National Centre of Seismology.
  2. CWC), National Informatics Centre (NIG), Food Corporation of India (FCI), NCC, Nehru Yuva Kendras (NYKs) and Customs to function without any restriction.
  3. Other Ministries and Departments, and offices under their control, are to function with 100% attendance of Deputy Secretary and levels above that.
  4. Remaining officers and staff to attend upto 33% as per requirement.

Offices of the State/ Union Territory Governments, their Autonomous Bodies and Local Governments will remain open, as mentioned below:

  1. Police, home guards, civil defence, fire and emergency services, disaster management, prisons and municipal services will function without any All other Departments of State/ UT Governments to work with restricted staff.
  2. Group ‘A’ and ‘B’ officers may attend as required. Group ‘C’ and levels below that may attend upto 33% of strength, as per requirement to ensure social However, delivery of public services shall be ensured, and necessary staff will be deployed for such purpose.
  3. District administration and Treasury (including field offices of the Accountant General) will function with restricted staff. However, delivery of public services shall be ensured, and necessary staff will be deployed for such purpose.
  4. Resident Commissioner of States/ UTs, in New Delhi, only to the extent of coordinating COVID-19 related activities and internal kitchen operations.
  5. Forest offices: staff/ workers required to operate and maintain zoo, nurseries, wildlife, fire-fighting in forests, watering plantations, patrolling and their necessary transport movement.

 Persons to remain under mandatory quarantine, as under:

  1. All such persons who have been directed by health care personnel to remain under strict home/ institutional quarantine for a period as decided by local Health Authorities.
  2. Persons violating quarantine will be liable to legal action under Section 188 of the IPC, 1860.
  3. Quarantined persons, who have arrived in India after 15.2.2020, after expiry of their quarantine period and being tested COVID-19 negative, will be released following the protocol prescribed in the SOP issued by MHA.

Misc News/Press Release

Foundation Stone of Shiv Dham at Mandi Laid, Will Cost Rs. 150 Crore

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Shiv Dham Mandi model

Mandi: Shiv Dham construction at Mandi would cost over Rs. 150 crores to the State. It was informed during the foundation stone laying ceremony of the Shiv Dham Phase-I to be developed at Kangnidhar. The First Phase of this project would be completed at a cost of Rs. 40 crore, the government said.

The Shiv Dham would be developed in an area of 9.5 hectares. Shiv Dham would have replicas of twelve Jyotirlingam, a statue of Lord Shiva and Ganesh, Museum, Food Court, Herbal Garden, Nakshatra Vatika, Amphi-theatre, Orientation Centre, Car Parking etc. 

Further, it was informed that the foundation stone of multi-storey parking was laid near U-Block. An estimated amount of Rs. 100 crore would be spent on Public-Private Partnership mode, the government informed.

There is also a proposal to construct Rs. 27 crore Anaj Mandi (Grain Market) in Mandi, it was informed.

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New Farm Laws Could be Death Knell for States like Himachal, Says 19 Organizations While Expressing Solidarity with Farmers Protest

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Himachal PRadesh supports farmers protest

Shimla-More support is pouring in for farmers protest from Himachal Pradesh. Today, about 19 social organizations, women’s organisations and farmer’s groups issued a joint public statement today in solidarity with the three-month long farmer’s movement in the country.

The statement demands the repeal of the three new farm laws introduced by the central government and calls for strengthening minimum support prices, extending it to crops, especially fruits and vegetables grown for the market in Himachal Pradesh. The statement is critical of the non-democratic manner in which the bills were passed in the parliament in a hurry in the middle of the Covid led lockdown.

Highlighting the issues with each of the laws the organisations condemned the fact that these are designed to benefit the large corporate houses which would ultimately break the back of the farmers.

The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 has the potential of destroying the government led APMC mandis, the oganizations said.

The second law on contract farming puts the farmers in the dock by not just opening them to risks when getting into contracts with companies but also by closing the door of the courts for redressal for farmers, the statement said.  

Also Read: Supporters in Himachal Displaying Solidarity With Protesting Farmers, Term Delhi Violence a Failed Conspiracy to Discredit Movement

Further the statement said that the third law, the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020, as corporates are allowed to buy, store, sell produce minus regulation and accountability of any sort. It also seeks to restrict the powers of the government with respect to production, supply, and distribution of certain key commodities. It is now evident that this will have a direct impact on the storage and distribution of subsidized grains by the government. This can turn out to be a direct threat for food security of the country.

“For a state like Himachal Pradesh where a large section of the population depends heavily on food grains produced by the farmers of the plains and distributed at subsidized rates through the PDS these laws could prove to be a death knell,” the groups said in the statement.  

Even for those who are able to procure from the market, the rising prices of commodities would be a direct hit on their pockets. Apart from the consumers, the farmers of the state will also suffer a setback. The absence of MSPs for fruits and off-season vegetables and lack of APMC markets here have already been a cause of concern for the cash croppers of the state, the statement read.

“In fact fruit and vegetable producer unions have been demanding extension of MSPs and better markets so that apple producers for example are not exploited by ‘middlemen’ and private vendors,” the organizations said.  

In the terai region where there is a surplus of maize produce farmers are forced to sell it at Rs 1000 to 1200 whereas Rs 1850 is the MSP – but the markets are too far for them to access, they said.

The statement has also condemned the manner in which the state and central governments have tried to defame the peaceful protests through various tactics.

“The repression of those coming out in support of the farmer’s movement, be it activists or journalists reporting on the developments is utterly shameful and against the principles of democracy,” the statemen said.  

The groups said that they are also going to send this statement as a submission to the President of India demanding repeal of the three laws.

Housing in makeshift camps, tens of thousands of farmers have been protesting on Delhi boarders for nearly 100 days now. Though the protests had begun last year, the movement has seen a massive growth in recent weeks as it receiving support from environmental activists, opposition parties and even Western celebrities. Now, this farmers movement is spreading to the country’s northern and western farm belts.

The group of organizations that issued this statement includes All India Democratic Women’s Association, HP (AIDWA), Bhumiheen Bhumi Adhikar Manch, HP, Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti, Citizens’ Rights Forum, Kangra, Ekal Nari Shakti Sangathan, HP, Ghumantu Pashupalak Mahasabha, Chamba, Himachal Kisan Sabha, Himalaya Niti Abhiyan, Himdhara Environment Research and Action Collective, Parvatiya Mahila Adhikar Manch, Right To Education Forum, HP, Samajik Arthik Samanta ke Liye Jan Abhiyan, Save Lahaul Spiti, Spiti Civil Society, Sirmaur Van Adhikar Manch, Sambhaavnaa Institute, SUTRA, Solan,  Tower Line Soshit Jagrukta Manch, Himachal Pradesh, and Zila Van Adhikar Samiti, Kinnaur.

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Ugly Brawl at HP Vidhan Sabha on Budget Session’s Opening Day, Five Congress Legislators Suspended for Rest of Session

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HP Vidhan Sabha

Shimla- The Budget Session 2021-22 of the Himachal Pradesh Vidhan Sabha witnessed an ugly scene on the opening day of the session. The situation was so tense that it led to a scuffle between BJP MLAs, Minister, and Congress legislator including the leader of opposition Mukesh Agnihotri. Congress alleged that its legislators were manhandled. Following this incident, five legislators including Agnihotri, Harsh Vardhan, Satpal Raizada, Vinay Kumar, and Sunder Singh Thakur were reportedly suspended for the rest of the session. Later, an FIR was also filed against the legislators at the Boileauganj Police Station.

It was shocking to see the Speaker, Deputy Speaker, and Chief Minister jumping into the brawl as it raised concerns about arrangement and management of security at the Vidhan Sabha.

The motion for their suspension was introduced and passed in the absence of opposition legislators.

What Happened at Vidhan Sabha

Mukesh Agnihotri disrupted the speech of the Governor saying that it includes no mention of crucial issues like price rise of petrol, diesel cooking gas, inflation, unemployment, corruption, back-door entries etc. Agnihotri said the speech was nothing more than a bundle of lies. Agnihotri claim that Dattatreya had skipped a major portion of his speech and had chosen to stay mum on these critical issues. Governor Bandaru Dattatraya, following din, did not read the entire speech and ended his speech within 15 minutes abruptly.

Subsequently, the proceedings were adjourned till 2 pm on Monday. 

When the Governor was leaving from Vidhan Sabha, Mukesh Agnihotri, along with other Congress legislators, blocked the road and did not let the Governor’s car leave the premises. Agnihotri was seen trying to lay on the bonnet of the car. Videos clearly showed legislator pushing each other and using a hostile tone. Minister Suresh Bhardwaj was seen falling down on the ground, while Deputy Speaker Hans Raj was seen pushing Congress legislators.

“It’s the first time in the history of Himachal Pradesh Vidhan Sabha that the Governor did not read the entire speech and allegedly fled the Vidhan Sabha,” Agnihotri said. He said that Congress legislators only wanted to speak to the Governor.

Agnihotri alleged that they were pushed, dragged, and manhandled even though they were only raising slogans and did not even touch the Governor or the Chief Minister. 

Speaking on the suspension of five Congress legislators, Vikramaditya Singh, MLA of Shimla (Rural) questioned as to why only action was taken on the Congress legislators and not the Deputy Speaker, Hans Raj. In videos, he was seen pushing Congress legislators.

The Speaker, HP Vidhan Sabha, Vipin Parmar condemned the ruckus and blamed it on the Congress legislators. He alleged Congress of manhandling the Governor. He said that the incident has brought embarrassment to the State Assembly and the constitution of India. 

Later, when the session was resumed, referring to the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Himachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly, the Chief Minister said that Rule number 30 says,

“No member shall interrupt the Governor when he is addressing the House; or display any placard; or shout any slogans; make nay protect; or raise any point of order, debate; or discussion; or otherwise willfully disrupt the proceedings, immediately preceding or during, or immediately following the Governor’s Address under Article 175 (1) of the Constitution and the Governor’s Special Address under 176(1) of the Constitutions, and the commission of any of the above lapses shall be treated as contempt of the House and dealt with as such under these rules.”

The session is scheduled to conclude on March 20.

The chief minister will present the budget for 2021-22 in the Assembly on March 6, Speaker Vipin Parmar had said on Thursday.

 

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