No eatables are allowed inside the theaters, cinema halls, multiplexes, a government notification issue today said.
Cinema halls are finally set to reopen Thursday in Mumbai and the rest of Maharashtra after months of being shut down in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes regular movie halls, theaters, and multiplexes outside containment zones. They will, however, be allowed to function at only 50% capacity under the circumstances. No eatables will be allowed inside, a government notification issue today said.
This is apart from all the indoor stadiums, swimming pools and yoga institutes – again, outside containment zones – that will be allowed to function Thursday onwards, according to the notification. All these facilities will have to strictly observe social distancing and sanitisation norms.
“The SOP for the same will be issued by the cultural affairs department and local authorities”. The notification signed by Maharashtra Chief Secretary, Sanjay Kumar, said.
The Union government had on October 14 allowed multiplexes, cinema halls, and theatres to reopen. But on strict standard operating procedures (SOPs). The Ministry of Home Affairs had then left it to states to take a final call on the matter, based on specific situations.
Following this, the Maharashtra government had reportedly begun to formulate the SOPs. With over 600 cinema halls in Maharashtra – more than 200 in Mumbai alone. – the region is a key market for the Indian films industry, particularly Bollywood.
In the meantime, Maharashtra is one of the worst hit states in the pandemic. With 44,128 deaths reported till now amid 1.7 million cases in all.