RWA uncles, please calm down about Aarogya Setu

Resident Welfare Associations ('RWAs') have nominated themselves as the first line of defence against the coronavirus pandemic. Media reports suggest that RWAs are going well beyond the guidelines issued by the government and mandating use of Aarogya Setu by residents and visitors including domestic workers, drivers, delivery personnel and other service providers. Such measures may be well intentioned but they are illegal because the bottom line is that RWAs are private self-administration bodies which lack the power to issue rules restricting the freedom of movement and right to livelihood of individuals. In lights of this, we wrote to the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, the National Real Estate Development Council and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare seeking issuance of an advisory which clarifies that use of the Aarogya Setu mobile app cannot be made a precondition for entering residential colonies.

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