01/06/2020 4:09 PM IST

Ahmedabad: 46 Micro-Containment Zones Announced, Here's What You Need To Know

Here's what allowed and what's not in Ahmedabad's micro-containment zones.

A passenger shows her ticket and identity card to a security personal at the airport in Ahmedabad on May 25, 2020.

The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) on Sunday identified 46 micro-containment zones as Gujarat reopens. There are a total of 14,160 houses and 69,624 residents in these micro-containment areas.

“Several areas of Ahmedabad city have been declared as micro-containment zones. Now, instead of bringing the entire ward of the municipal corporation under containment zone, small localities in each ward have been identified as micro-containment zones,” the AMC said in a statement, according to PTI.

Exit and entry points of these micro-containment zones will remain closed, and nobody residing there will be allowed to venture out for work or any other purpose, the AMC said. Only essential services are allowed in these zones between 7 am and 7 pm, it said, PTI reported.

The list of micro-containment zones will be “dynamic in nature and updated periodically,” the Gujarat government said on Sunday.

Till Sunday, Ahmedabad had reported 12,180 Covid-19 cases and 842 deaths. 

A senior AMC official told The Times of India that micro-containment means even if a person is associated with essential services, they will not be allowed to leave except for medical or other emergencies. 

Large societies that have shops within premises will be allowed to open, but for other residential societies, essential items will be provided at doorstep, the AMC official further told The Times of India.  

Gujarat High Court’s observations

A bench of Chief Justice Vikram Nath and Justice J.B. Pardiwala said that Covid-19 is a humanitarian crisis and not a political one. Merely criticising the government is not going to magically cure people or make the dead come back to life, the Gujarat High Court said in its latest order on a suo motu PIL, according to PTI.

The bench also said that “if the state government would not have been doing anything, as alleged, then probably, by now, we all would have been dead,” The Indian Express reported.

This comes just a few days after an earlier bench of Justices JB Pardiwala and IJ Vora, hearing the same PIL, said in its May 22 order that the condition at the government-run Ahmedabad Civil Hospital was “pathetic” and “as good as a dungeon”. 

The bench headed by Chief Justice Vikram Nath called for “cooperation, understanding and constructive criticism” to help the state government fight the pandemic. 

The division bench of Chief Justice Vikram Nath and Justice JB Pardiwala expressed anguish that its recent observations on the government’s dealing of the pandemic sparked “unnecessary debates and comments” on social media and other platforms and was “misused for some oblique motive”.

“In times of crisis, we need to bind, not bicker. The Covid-19 crisis is a humanitarian crisis, not a political crisis. Hence, it is imperative that no one politicise this issue,” the court said.

The High Court also asked the Opposition to offer a “helping hand” rather than “critical tongue” in times like these, adding that simply highlighting flaws and gaps in the state’s handling of the situation only “creates fear in the minds of people”.

The court said the litigation is in public interest and whatever order the court passed was “for the welfare of the people at large” and to remind the government of its constitutional obligations and directive policies.

It further said it expects the government to accept its orders “in the right spirit bearing in mind the paramount consideration of the health and well-being of the people as imperatively implicit in the right to life guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India”.

“All good work that the government would do will surely be appreciated and hailed. If we find any remiss, negligence or carelessness, we shall come down heavily. In the first place, why should the state government invite any criticism from the court,” it said.

(With PTI inputs)