Government allows opening of all shops in rural areas, standalone shops in urban areas with exceptions 

All shops in rural areas, except those in shopping malls have been allowed to open.

Apr 25, 2020 14:32 IST
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The Ministry of Home Affairs issued an order late night on April 24, 2020 allowing all shops except the ones in malls to reopen in rural areas and all standalone and neighbourhood shops including the ones in residential complexes to re-open in urban areas amid the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown. 

Under the order, the shops will be allowed to function with 50 percent strength of workers, who will be required to wear masks and follow the social distancing guidelines. 

The government has, however not allowed the shops in markets, market complexes and shopping malls to re-open. The relaxation will also not apply in districts that are coronavirus hotspot areas and containment zones. 


The opening of standalone and neighbourhood shops is expected to bring relief to the people who have been under lockdown for over a month. The nation-wide lockdown was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24, 2020. 

MHA eases restrictions: What is allowed to open and what is not?

What is open?

1. All shops in rural areas, except those in shopping malls are allowed to open.

2.All standalone shops, neighbourhood shops and shops located in residential complexes have been allowed to open in urban areas.

3.Sale by e-commerce companies will continue to be permitted for essential goods.

4.Markets located outside the municipal corporations and municipalities will be allowed to remain open after social distancing rules with 50 per cent of strength.

What is not opened? 

1.Shops located in COVID-19 hotspot areas and containment zones will continue to remain shut. 

2.Sale of non-essential items by e-commerce platforms will continue to be prohibitted.

3.Shops located in markets and market complexes and shopping malls will not be allowed to open.

4.The sale of liquor and other items will continue to be prohibited, as specified in the National Directives for COVID-19 management.

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