Today the central government has extended the lockdown again for 2 weeks in the leu of coronavirus. And even the nationwide lockdown, states like Odisha, Punjab, Maharashtra, Telangana, West Bengal, and Karnataka have already extended the lockdown till April 30 If states can declare lockdowns in states at their level, then the question arises as to what is the difference between the central and state lockdown and which lockdown is necessary. What will happen if there is a conflict between the Center and the State Government?
State wise lockdown
As per the constitution, subjects like law and order as well as public health are kept for the state government, which means that the state can take steps related to both. Additionally, a number of states have ordered lockdowns under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, which empowers them to introduce temporary regulations to prevent the outbreak and spread of the disease.
The central government had on March 24 cited a lack of uniformity in the lockdowns implemented by states to order a nationwide lockdown. The lockdown was ordered through the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), headed by the Prime Minister under Section 6 (2) (I) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005. The Union Home Ministry issued a 21-day lockdown order under Section 10 (2) (l) of the Act in compliance with the NDMA order. It is likely that the same procedure will be adopted for the extension of lockdown.
The Centre has talked with the states regarding the lockdown. But the question arises whether it is possible for the state to defy the Centre’s orders? Experts say the Centre has a strong position to implement its orders. Article 254 of the Constitution states that if there is an inconsistency between the law made by Parliament and the law made by the states, so in this situation, the position of the central government becomes stronger. In addition, the President also has emergency powers in the event of a confrontation. States can declare their own lockdowns here, but cannot ask for a mandatory lockdown imposed by the Centre.