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Centre makes ‘Aarogya Setu’ App must for govt staff, asks them to check status before starting for office

The Central government staff have also been advised that in case the App shows a message that he/she has a ‘moderate’ or ‘high risk’, then the concerned individual should not report to office and self-isolate for 14 days or till the status becomes ‘safe’ or ‘low risk’.

SNS | New Delhi |

As India’s death toll due to the novel Coronavirus crossed the 1000-mark and the total cases topped 31,000, the Government on Wednesday issued orders making the downloading of the ‘Aarogya Setu’ App mandatory for all Central government staff.

For the safety of all government officials, Union Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions on Wednesday issued an order for all Central government employees to “immediately” download Aarogya Setu App on their mobile phones.

The employees have been further asked to review their status on the mobile application before starting for office and commute only when the App shows ‘safe’ or ‘low risk’ status.

The Central government staff have also been advised that in case the App shows a message that he/she has a ‘moderate’ or ‘high risk’, then the concerned individual should not report to office and self-isolate for 14 days or till the status becomes ‘safe’ or ‘low risk’.

Issued to all Ministries, departments of Central government, Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), Cabinet Secretariat and others, the order mentions that effective use of Aarogya Setu App aimed to break the chain of transmission of novel coronavirus or COVID-19.

Joint Secretary (Administration) should ensure that above directions are strictly followed in the respective Ministry and department, the order said.

Ministries and departments may issue similar instructions to all autonomous or statutory bodies, Public Sector Units (PSUs) attached to them, the order advised.

The Government had on April 1 unveiled the ‘Aarogya Setu’ App – a COVID-19 tracking mobile application developed by the National Informatics Centre that comes under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, government of India.

The app is aimed at augmenting the initiatives of the Central government, particularly the department of health, in proactively reaching out to and informing the users of the app regarding risks, best practices and relevant advisories pertaining to the containment of COVID-19.

The application, which tracks through a Bluetooth and location-generated social graph, is designed to alert users if they have come in close proximity with any COVID-19 positive patient.

It calculates the user’s risk of infection based on recency and proximity of COVID-19 patient.

The ‘Aarogya Setu’ App is currently available on Google Play Store for download.

To use the app, one needs switch on Bluetooth and location and set location sharing to “always”.

The app’s alerts are accompanied by instructions on how to self-isolate and what to do in case you develop symptoms that may need help and support.

“With Aarogya Setu, you can protect yourself, your family and friends, and help our country in the effort to fight COVID-19,” according to the description of the app.

Till April 25, the app, as per the statistics shared by Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) officials, recorded 75 million downloads.