As the nation continues to operate under lockdown, the Ministry of Home Affairs has put out a notice that details some of the services that will resume post-April 20th. The circular listed a large number of entities that will be allowed to resume operations after the 20th of April. The list issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs is fairly large but lists out some interesting additions. For starters, e-commerce platforms will be allowed to resume operations, with goods carriers also getting a permit to transit between state lines without any hassles. This means Amazon and Flipkart will be able to resume operations, and users should once again be able to order smartphones, TVs, smartwatches and other consumer electronics on the respective websites. Their delivery vehicles will be allowed to ply but will require a pass from the appropriate authorities. We have reached out to both Flipkart and Amazon to clarify how much of their product inventory would go back on sale and whether delivery timelines would go back to normal.
In addition to e-commerce platforms, the government has also approved factories to be re-opened. This means that smartphones companies who have manufacturing units in the country can resume production. However, production may be resumed with a reduced staff, all of whom must practice social distancing and take appropriate measures so as to ensure there is no spread of the Coronavirus infection. The government, in its circular, has also said that any operations related to the supply chain of the approved industry are also allowed to resume operations.
While the government has relaxed the lockdown for various industries, there is still a complete ban on any kind of social or religious gatherings. Restaurants, bars, malls, movie theatres etc are ordered to remain closed as well. Additionally, areas that get designated as red zones due to an increase in the number of COVID cases, will not be permitted to carry out any of the newly allowed activities. You can read the full order here.
What this means for most of us is, well, for one, the OnePlus 8 may be reaching consumers’ hands a lot sooner than expected. Apple too announced the new iPhone SE (2020) and if e-commerce websites are allowed to resume business, then it is likely that these devices would be making their way into consumers’ hands before the lockdown is officially lifted. However, it remains to be seen how much of the inventory on Amazon and Flipkart will go back on sale. While all this looks promising, it all hinges on the hope that this increased activity won't lead to a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases.