Cinema halls to reopen from October 15 with 50% capacity

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After remaining dosed for nearly seven months, cinema halls and multiplexes in the UT are set to reopen with up to 50 percent seating capacity from October 15 under Unlock 5.0.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) today issued fresh guidelines for reopening of various activities such as schools and colleges and swimming pools for training purposes, only outside the containment zones.

The new guidelines will come into effect from October 1. The MHA has allowed cinemas, theatres, and multiplexes to open with up to 50 percent of their capacity business-to-business (B2B) exhibitions, swimming pools for training purposes, and entertainment parks from October 15.

The ministry will issue standard operating procedures (SOPS) in this connection. In the Unlock 5.0 guidelines, the UT has been given the flexibility to take a decision on reopening schools and coaching institutions after October 15 in a graded manner.

However, the decision is to be taken in consultation with the respective school/institution and subject to the SOPs prepared by the UT with health and safety precautions.

The Department of Higher Education (DHE) may take a decision on the timings of the opening of colleges/higher education institutions in consultation with the MHA, on the basis of an assessment of the situation. Online/distance learning shall continue to be a preferred mode of teaching and shall be encouraged. UT Adviser Manoj Panda said they would implement the MHC guidelines for Unlock 5.0.

Social, academic, sports, entertainment, cultural, religious, and political functions besides other congregations have already been permit-ted with a ceiling of 100 persons.

Now, the UT has been given the flexibility to permit such gatherings beyond the limit of 100 after October 15, but with a rider. In closed spaces, a maximum of 50 percent of the hall capacity will be allowed, with a ceiling of 200 persons.