Mumbai: The 21-day countrywide lockdown will not affect the normal functioning of the markets and the trading in debt and equity markets would continue unaffected, the exchanges clarified.
In a statement NSE said that the functions of the exchange will continue normally. Ashish Chauhan, CEO of BSE, also said that the exchange's functions would continue.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi on late Tuesday evening said that the nation was going into a complete lockdown for 21 days to contain the spread of deadly Covid-19. This gave rise to apprehensions whether stock markets are also included in the lockdown.
However, a Ministry of Home Affairs notification said capital and debt market services as notified by Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) will be exempt from the lockdown.
Despite the continuous clarification from central government and few states brokers continued to face problems in reaching offices due to lockdown conditions. Many fear that the troubles will only escalate post the prime minister's address to the country.
The brokers' association, Association of National Exchange Members in India (ANMI), in a letter to Sebi on 23 March asked the regulator to shut down the markets if all state governments do not declare share broking and depository services as essential services and exempted from lockdown.
The letter also cited that even skeletal staff could not reach their head offices in Delhi, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Karnataka.