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ESMA invoked in UP, Sec 144 in Lucknow

The Yogi Adityanath has invoked the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA), banning strikes in all state government departments for a period of six months. The Lucknow district administration, meanwhile, has imposed prohibitory orders under section 144 in the state capital.

The decision to invoke ESMA comes in the wake of support extended by some state government employees unions to the nation-wide strike call given by central trade unions.

ESMA mandates imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or a fine which may extend to Rs 1,000, or with both, to any person who instigates a strike which is illegal under this Act. It also gives the police the right to arrest, without a warrant, anybody violating the Act’s provisions.

The Yogi government had last invoked ESMA in May this year. The ban on strikes will continue till May 2021. Late Wednesday, the Lucknow district administration clamped Section 144 in the state capital.

The prohibitory orders imposed in Lucknow will remain in force till December 1, according to the order issued by the state government.

The government spokesman said that this has been done in view of rising cases of COVID-19 infections in the state capital despite all precautions. No new event will be allowed in Lucknow without prior permission from the district authorities, the state government said in its order.

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