Updated: Dec 16, 2020
On March 24, 2020, the Prime Minister of India declared a total lockdown for 3 weeks for all the residing citizens of the nation to prevent the outbreak of the Coronavirus.
As much as we have heard the words, ‘quarantine’, ‘curfew’, ‘lockdown’. All of them hold a legal connotation and definitions under various acts and laws existing in India.
According to Article 19 (1) (b) and Article 19 (d) of the Indian constitution, all the citizens have the right 'to assemble peacefully and without arms' and 'to move peacefully throughout the territory of India' respectively.
Whereas due to the recent lockdown being announced by the PM, it restricts civil liberty and according to some critics also violates the fundamental rights being guaranteed.
For better understanding and to reach a conclusion it is important to study the inception, origin, and existence of these terms in the legal sense.
The term, “lockdown” was first used by the government workers to explain a situation in which the trade of goods and movement has refrained and the basic goods required for survival are distributed. Some examples are-
THE DELHI EPIDEMIC DISEASES COVID 16 REGULATIONS 2020
THE MAHARASHTRA EPIDEMIC DISEASES COVID 19 REGULATIONS 2020
THE PUNJAB EPIDEMIC DISEASE COVID 19 REGULATIONS 2020
THE HIMACHAL PRADESH EPIDEMIC DISEASE COVID 19 REGULATIONS 2020
Lockdown and Curfew are very distinct terms which vary from each other in every aspect, in lockdown the government officials or the police cannot arrest or detain someone if found not following the orders whereas in curfew they can. However, according to Section 188, Section 269, and Section 270 of the Indian Penal Code, public servants can enforce the lockdown for efficiency.
THE EPIDEMIC DISEASES ACT, 1897