Maharashtra to Reopen Schools, Cinema Halls in October – What Are the SOPs?
Will offline classes continue? How many people will be allowed in cinema halls?
Schools, religious places, and cinema halls will be reopening across Maharashtra on different dates in October, months after they were shut down in late March, due to the second wave of coronavirus infections.
What are the different guidelines? Will offline classes continue? How many people will be allowed at a time in cinema halls?
Here's all you need to know.
I live in Mumbai. Will school reopen for all classes in the city?
No, physical classes will resume only for 8-12 graders in Mumbai. Decision about reopening for the rest of the students will be taken in November by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
What about the rest of Maharashtra?
Classes will not resume for those in Classes 1-7 in urban areas. This rule applies to both private and government schools.
Are physical classes mandatory?
While schools will reopen across the entire state, there is no compulsion for students to attend physical classes. Consent of parents will be necessary if they want to attend offline classes.
What are the SOPs for the reopening of religious places?
All places of worship including masjids, churches, and gurudwaras, which are outside COVID-19 containment zones, will reopen on 7 October.
However, thermal screening, face masks, use of sanitiser, and hand wash will be mandatory.
Further, common prayer mats will be discouraged.
What about religious gatherings?
Religious gatherings are strictly prohibited.
How many visitors are allowed at a single time?
It is the responsibility of the management of the religious place to stagger the timings of the visitors.
What else is prohibited at places of worship?
Touching of saints, holy books, and idols will not be allowed.
Physical offerings such as prasad and sprinkling of holy water will be prohibited.
Symptomatic visitors will not be allowed inside religious places.
How many people are allowed at weddings?
Weddings are allowed with 100 people at most at closed premises and 200 at most at open-air premises.
When will cinema halls reopen?
Theatres and auditoriums will be reopened in Maharashtra from 22 October, the Office of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray tweeted on 25 September.
Are there specific guidelines for cinema halls?
No, not yet. The state government is expected to release a set of guidelines soon. However, an official told Hindustan Times that the cinema halls will open with 50% seating capacity.
Chief secretary Sitaram Kunte, additional chief secretary (health) Pradeep Vyas and other senior officials are expected to meet to discuss "if only fully vaccinated people should be allowed with a view to lower the risk and also encourage vaccination,” the official added.
Watch this space for more information.
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