The Ministry of Home Affairs, vide an order dated 29th April; 2020 allowed the movement of stranded migrant workers, students and tourists across the country but there are certain preliminary conditions to conduct such movement operations as prescribed by the same order. A day after this order, Maharashtra government provided some guidelines with regard to the travel of the stranded.
It confirmed that no person will be allowed to leave or enter into the State without a letter from the appropriate district or State authority. This move of Maharashtra government will prevent the further spread of COVID-19 in Maharashtra as well as other states.
The Maharashtra Government had appointed Dr. Nitin Kareer, Additional Chief Secretary (Revenue), Izdes Kundan, Principle Secretary (Women and Child Development Department) and Abhay Avalkar, Director (State Disaster Management Department) to systematise the movement. All district collectors will be treated as nodal authority for sending and receiving stranded persons, especially migrants between States or Union Territories or within the State itself. Though officers were appointed by the Maharashtra Government to co-ordinate the movement, the Government still lacked in one field. Maharashtra government should have appointed more authorities to tackle those who violate the guidelines provided by it. The State Government could’ve appointed a person with magisterial authority to deal with all the cases of violation of the guidelines stringently and without any delay.
The collectors or municipal commissioners were ordered to ensure that any person or group coming into the State must observe a 14-day quarantine period. All such persons are to assessed by local health personnel and kept in home quarantine, unless there is a requirement that they must be quarantined institutionally.
State government has made it amply clear that every person who wants to travel will be screened and allowed to proceeed only if he shows no symptoms of influenza or COVID-19. A letter will be provided to them which will certify that they’re already screened and were found asymptomatic. Such letter will help the authorities to make sure that asymptomatic persons are not kept with infected persons and hence, is also among the measures that can prevent COVID-19 manifestation. A transit pass shall be issued to all the transport vehicles which are to be used to transport the stranded migrants. The pass is supposed to specify the route, validity and bear the names of all persons travelling through it.
The guidelines issued by Maharashtra Government are more or less similar with the ones provided by MHA through its order dated 29th April; 2020. The guidelines are appropriate and but not stringent enough to contain the rapid spread of COVID-19 in Maharashtra. Maharashtra, so far has the highest number of positive cases of COVID-19, and hence, the State needs more stringency than other states to be imbibed in its guidelines to contain the COVID-19 as soon as possible.
Article Written By- Muskan Sharma
Law Student– Jamia Millia Islamia
(HRDI Work From Home Internship)
 Order No. 40-3/2020-DM-I (A), Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, available at: https://www.mha.gov.in/sites/default/files/MHA%20Order%20Dt.%2029.4.2020%20on%20movement%20of%20migrant%20workers%2C%20pilgrims%2C%20tourists%2C%20students%20and%20other%20persons.PDF (Last visited on 30th April; 2020)
 “State issue guidelines for travel of those stranded”, The Hindu, available at: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/state-issues-guidelines-for-travel-of-those-stranded/article31477101.ece (Last visited on 1st May; 2020)