Under India’s lockdown 4.0(until May 31) e-commerce companies are expected to resume delivery of essential as well as non-essential goods in all places outside the Covid-19 containment zones. This will also include some parts of red zones, which so far have only been receiving essential goods from online retailers.

In containment zones, only essential activities are allowed.

Until lockdown 3.0 (which ended yesterday) the e-commerce platforms could sell non-essential goods in green and orange zones while being allowed to sell essential items nationwide. However, as per the Ministry of Home Affairs’ (MHA) latest guidelines, all activities will be permitted, except those specifically prohibited.

The move to allow delivery of non-essential goods will provide a much-required boost to e-commerce firms whose businesses have been drastically impacted due to the restriction on the sale of goods.

Although, the final decision lies with states and union territories (UT), who are allowed to restrict specific activities, based on the assessment of the situation in their respective regions. “The delineation of red, green and orange zones will be decided by the respective state and UT governments, after taking into consideration the parameters shared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of India,” states MHA.