As Covid-19 cases zoom, Maharashtra brings in stringent curbs

Maharashtra has listed out a slew of measures in its bid to stop further spread of Covid-19

The surge in Covid-19 cases has prompted the government of Maharashtra to usher in more stringent curbs. Besides a night curfew that starts at 11 pm and ends at 5 am the next morning, a notification from the Department of Revenue and Forest, Disaster Management, Relief and Rehabilitation, states that movement of people in groups of five or more shall be prohibited during the non-curfew hours.

Essentially, the state government wants to make sure that the people do not crowd on the streets or public spaces, or go out of homes if it is not absolutely necessary. Maintaining maximum social distancing would be the best thing to do as the virus rise continues unabated.

As per the new Covid prevention norms, Maharashtra has also notified that eateries and restaurants shall be allowed to function only at 50 percent capacity, and that too only between 8 am and 10 pm. Further, the restaurants will have to prominently display the exact number of customers inside at any time of the day. The government has, however, clamped no ban on home delivery of food.

The state government has also announced the closure of educational institutions till February 15. However, activities connected Class X and Class XII board examinations will go on unhindered.  Examinations UPSC/MPSC/Government bodies can also go ahead as per Central government norms.

Maharashtra spells out less crowds, more safety measures

While theatres and auditoriums will be allowed to operate only at 50 percent capacity between 8 am and 10 pm, gyms, swimming pools, wellness centres, and beauty salons will have to cease functioning till further notice. Entertainment parks, zoos, museums and forts also shall remain closed.

Shopping malls can stay open if they ensure 50 percent capacity. As in the case of eateries, mall owners will need to display the number of people inside. Besides, malls should also have to set up rapid antigen testing units inside, and ensure protocols. Hair cutting salons can operate if they can ensure 50 percent attendance, between 7 am to 10 pm. Adherence to Covid appropriate behaviour is a must, the notification added.

Functions relating to weddings, religious, social and political events should ensure a capacity of just at 50. For funerals, the number of attendees permitted is 20.

Only fully vaccinated persons or those carrying a negative RT-PCR report shall be allowed domestic travel. International travel shall be in accordance with Central norms.

No entry for visitors in offices

The state government has also banned visitors in government offices, unless they have the required permission from heads of the offices or departments. Government offices have also been advised to rationalise those reporting for duty, by promoting work at home mode. In the case of private offices, operating with 50 percent attendance and staggered working hours is permitted. Offices need to make sure that only fully vaccinated employees attend work.

The Maharashtra government’s Covid-related curbs have been prompted by the unprecedented rise in number of patients over the past few days.

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