From petrol price, new trains and flights: What will change in Unlock 1
The country has moved into Unlock 1, the first of the three-phased exit plan from the Covid-19 lockdowns in place since March 25
There will be a hike in fuel prices and several trains and flights will resume from Monday, June 1, as the country will enter the fifth phase of the coronavirus lockdown with a three-phased exit plan.
Public transport in some states will also resume and as will the central government’s ambitious food security scheme.
Here are some of the things that will change or start from June 1:
Price of petrol to go up in these states
Petrol and diesel prices will increase by Rs 2 from June 1 in Maharashtra, following the state government’s decision to hike the cess levied on the two fuels.
Petrol price in Mumbai will increase to Rs 78.31 per litre from Rs 76.31. The diesel retail rate will go up to Rs 68.21 per litre from Rs 66.21.
The government had on Saturday issued a notification increasing the cess for petrol to Rs 10.12 per litre from Rs 8.12. The cess on diesel is to rise to Rs 3 per litre from Re 1.
Besides the 26% and 24% value added (VAT) on petrol and diesel, respectively, the state government levies a cess on the fuels.
The Jammu and Kashmir government has also increased the rate of tax on the sale of petrol and diesel by Rs 2 per litre and Re 1 per litre, respectively.
Himachal Pradesh has also enhanced rates on the sale of diesel and petrol effective from June 1.
GoAir flights to resume
The low-cost carrier had announced in May that its final flight schedule has been approved and the airline will re-commence flying from June 1.
Online bookings for one-third of its pre-Covid summer schedule will be open from May 25 to May 31.
The airline said that it is prepared to resume safe flight operations and is awaiting clarity on the readiness of respective states and their airports with regards to acceptance of flights and conditions applicable to passengers arriving there.
“Without clarity on these conditions, GoAir does not wish to inconvenience its passengers by putting on sale flights immediately post May 25 which may have conditions for arriving passengers of which they may be unaware. On receiving clarity, GoAir will open its site for bookings after May 25 up to May 31, as, when and where appropriate,” the airline spokesperson said.
Assuring its passengers that it is fully equipped to execute Covid-19 specific safety procedures, the airline claimed to have received positive initial customer response.
GoAir is the only airline to commence its flight operations from June 1 instead of May 25.
200 passenger trains to resume services
The Indian railways will begin operating 200 non-AC special passenger trains per day from June 1 onward, in a step aimed at gradually restoring normal services.
These train services will be in addition to the existing Shramik Special trains and special AC trains started by the railways earlier to help stranded migrant workers in various states get back home.
Jan Shatabdi trains, Sampark Kranti, Duronto Express and other regular passenger trains are among those that will ply from Monday.
No linen, blankets and curtains will be provided on these trains and only those passengers with confirmed tickets will be allowed to enter railway stations. On arrival at their destination, the passengers will have to adhere to strict health protocols as prescribed by the destination state or Union Territory.
Religious places to reopen in Bengal
West Bengal has allowed the opening of religious places from June 1 with not more than 10 persons gathering at a time. Restaurants and shopping malls have been allowed to open on June 1.
Monuments, museums open doors in Rajasthan
Monuments and museums run by the state government will be opened from Monday. Entry will be free for tourists for the first two weeks. These monuments will open from 9am to 2am on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays in the first week starting June 1. For the next week, they will open on four days from 9am to 1pm and from 3pm to 5pm.
Government and private passenger buses will operate from June 1 in Himachal Pradesh. Buses will be able to ply from 7am to 7pm after a gap of 70 days. Buses will carry 60% of the total capacity but air conditioners will not run.
Pubic transport will resume with reduced services within districts in Tamil Nadu but buses will not be operated in worst-affected Chennai, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur and Chengalpet districts.
One Nation, One Ration Card scheme
The government’s ambitious scheme providing subsidized food grains to 81 crore people of the country will be implemented in 20 states and Union territories of the country.
Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced this while declaring a stimulus package of Rs 20 lakh crore in May. She had said this system will be implemented in all the states of the country by March 2021.
Once the national rollout is in place, any person holding a ration card under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) can buy his monthly ration from any public distribution system (PDS) outlet in the country just by mentioning his card number.