The Personnel Ministry has issued a standard operating procedure (SOP) for reopening of central and state training institutes from July 15, outlining necessary steps to be taken by them to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.
"As far as possible training programmes should be conducted in digital/online/virtual mode. Where it is necessary to conduct training in physical mode, the duration of the training programme should be reviewed carefully to make it more compact by separating the training curriculum into digital and physical mode,” it said.
The move came after the Union Home Ministry issued guidelines for phased reopening or 'Unlock 2' on June 29, allowing training institutes of central and state governments to function from July 15. It had also asked the Personnel Ministry to come out with an SOP for it.
In its SOP, the Personnel Ministry said that observance of social distancing, wearing of masks and other COVID-related protocols, as prescribed by central and state/district health authorities from time to time, should be ensured by the training institute concerned.
It said pregnant women, lactating mothers, people with asthma or chronic lung disease, high BP, chronic kidney disease and serious heart condition among others are at "high risk" and such trainees should attend courses online from their place of current posting/administrative training institute (ATI).
All classrooms, staffrooms, offices, hostels, corridors, lobbies, common areas and washrooms, etc. should be thoroughly cleaned/sanitised as per procedure prescribed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the SOP said.
"With a view to ensure safety, on best effort basis, the training institutes should ensure that the Aarogya Setu app is downloaded and installed by all trainees/other staff and faculty having compatible phones," it said.
The training institutes have also been asked to notify nodal officers for COVID-related administrative responsibilities and also constitute committees with clear demarcation of roles, especially for coronavirus-related matters.
"All the trainees and personnel of the training institutes should be encouraged to proactively disclose their health status, including fever/cough/sore throat/influenza like symptoms, to the institute medical authorities," according to the SOP issued on Friday.
A functional medical clinic/centre with the presence of qualified doctor(s) and nursing staff may be made available in each training institute with a protocol in place for treating of staff/faculty/trainees with flu-like symptoms, it said.
"SOPs should be developed in consultation with local public health authorities to ensure quick response for testing and isolation/quarantine of symptomatic patients etc.," the ministry said in a letter issued to secretaries to the government of India and chief secretaries of the states.
There will be no outdoor physical activities during the quarantine period, the Personnel Ministry said.
"All the trainees should be asked to maintain a note of their contacts on a daily basis from the date of their arrival in the institute,” it said.