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50% cap for cinema halls lifted, relaxation on gatherings

The centre in its guidelines also indicated that it might increase the permitted strength for gatherings.

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The government on Wednesday released new coronavirus guidelines that will allow cinema halls, which were earlier permitted for 50% of their seating strength, to operate at a higher capacity. The updated standard operating procedures (SOPs) that have been issued amid a steady decline in daily Covid numbers across the country, also allow the reopening of swimming pools for all. 

"Cinema halls and theatres have already been permitted upto 50% of seating capacity. Now they will be permitted to operate at higher seating capacity, for which a revised SOP will be issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting in consultation with MHA (the Ministry of Home Affairs)," it said in a release. 

Swimming pools had reopened for sportspersons last year. The centre has now permitted everyone to use them. "Now swimming pools will be permitted for use of all, for which a revised SOP will be issued by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MoYA&S) in consultation with MHA."

The centre in its guidelines also indicated that it might increase the permitted strength for gatherings. As for social and religious gatherings, as well as sporting and entertainment events in open spaces, it will be up to the respective state and Union Territory governments to decide upon the standard operating procedures, the home ministry said. For these events in closed spaces, halls have been allowed 50% seating capacity, with a maximum occupancy of 200 people. 

Business to Business (B2B) exhibition halls had already been permitted. Now, all types of exhibition halls will be permitted, for which a revised SOP will be issued by the Department of Commerce in consultation with MHA.

For further opening up of international air travel of passengers, Ministry of Civil Aviation (MOCA) may take a decision in consultation with Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) based on the assessment of the situation.


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events mha government Covid 19 cinema theatre

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