MHA pointers: Cinema halls, multiplexes allowed opening with 50% seating capability

Mukesh Ranjan
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 30

The government on Wednesday issued fresh guidelines for re-opening of certain more activities in areas outside the containment zones, which include schools and other educational institutions with greater flexibility, cinema halls and multiplexes with half of their capacity and swimming pools for the purpose of training of sportspersons. 

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) while issuing the guidelines said these will come into effect from October 1, 2020 and are based on feedback received from states and Union Territories (UTs), and extensive consultations held with related Central ministries and departments.

It, however, said, strict enforcement of lockdown in containment zones would continue till October 31, 2020 and the national directives for COVID-19 management “shall continue to be followed throughout the country”, for which the MHA would monitor their effective implementation.

The MHA in its guidelines said, “For re-opening of schools, colleges and coaching institutions, state/UT governments have been given the flexibility to take a decision after October 15, 2020, in a graded manner.  The decision shall be taken in consultation with the respective school/institution management, based on their assessment of the situation, and subject to conditions specified by the state authorities.”

It, however, said, “Online/distance learning shall continue to be the preferred mode of teaching and shall be encouraged and students may attend schools/institutions only with the written consent of parents.”

Salient features of the new guidelines

  • Activities permitted from October 15, 2020

    Cinemas/theatres/multiplexes with up to 50% of their seating capacity, the SOP will be issued by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.

  • Business to Business (B2B) Exhibitions, the SOP will be issued by the Department of Commerce.

  • Swimming pools for training of sportspersons, the SOP will be issued by Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports

  • Entertainment parks and similar places, the SOP will be issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW).

  • States are given flexibility to allow more than the limit of 100 persons at social/academic/ sports/entertainment/cultural/religious/political functions and other congregations from October 15, 2020.

  • In closed spaces only 50% of the hall capacity with a ceiling of 200 persons.

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