In order to curb the spread of COVID -19 during unlock 1.0, the Ministry of Home Affairs has passed strict guidelines to be followed by the employer while they open the offices for use.

Among many guidelines issued, the usage and installation of the Arogya Setu app is been entrusted in the hands of the employer failing which the employer and the employee may face consequences which may lead to even imprisonment.

Please read below the detailed guidelines of the MHA on the usage of AROGYA SETU.

Compliance Mandate

The law, as provided in the MHA order of May 30, 2020 (“MHA order“), states that a company must ensure that the Aarogya Setu is installed by all employees.

Section 8(ii) of the Guide for Phased Re-opening (Unlock 1) states that employers should ensure that the Aarogya Setu app is installed by all employees having compatible mobile phones.

Annexure – 2 of the MHA order deals with the offenses and penalties to be imposed in the case of violation of lockdown measures. As per the annexure, any violation of any of the provisions by the company will render the Directors, Officers, Managers, and Secretary guilty of committing an offense. Non-compliance may also lead to imprisonment for a term of six months or a monetary fine of INR 1000 or both.

The employers are now required to use ‘best efforts’ to ensure that all employees are installing Aarogya Setu application on their compatible mobile phones. Since the term ‘best efforts’ is not particularly defined, it can be interpreted as monitoring it on a regular basis. The Employer’s responsibility is to encourage usage of Arogya Setu even while working from home so that there is an updated risk profiling of employees possible.

Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code deals with disobedience to an order duly promulgated by a public servant. This section states that if any person who is in control of management disobeys the order and if such action or inaction results in causing injury or death to any other person that is lawfully employed, then such person may have committed an offense under this section and will be liable to punishment for a jail term up to 6 months or fine of INR 1000 or both.

This means that every day the employee visits the premises, he/she should be checked for the installation of the Aarogya Setu app. The company may be required to have an Aarogya Setu register to ensure compliance with this order.

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