Gymnasiums, yoga centres to open in Punjab; night curfew to continue

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Chandigarh, Jul 31 (PTI) The Punjab government on Friday allowed gymnasiums and yoga centres to operate while continuing with the night curfew for the next phase of the coronavirus lockdown from August 1 to 31.

Schools, colleges and coaching institutions will remain closed till August 31 while online or distance learning will continue.

Cinema halls, swimming polls, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places will not be permitted to open.

The revised guidelines have been issued by the state government two days after the Union Home Ministry allowed more relaxations in a bid to further open up the economy.

Yoga institutes and gymnasiums will be allowed to function from August 5 for which standard operating procedures will be issued by the Union Health Ministry.

Social, political, sports, entertainment, cultural events and other large congregations will not be permitted.

The night curfew will remain in force from 11 pm to 5 am. During the period, the movement of individuals for all non-essential activities shall remain prohibited throughout the state.

Essential activities, including operation of multiple shifts, movement of persons and goods on national highways, unloading of cargo and travel of persons to their destinations after disembarking from buses, trains and aeroplanes will be permitted.

All kind of examinations, admission/entrance tests conducted by universities, boards, public service commission and other institutions are allowed with social distancing in place.

The number of guests at a marriage function can't be more than 30 while number of people at funerals can’t go beyond 20.

Spitting at public places is completely prohibited and a punishable offence. Consumption of liquor, pan, gutka and tobacco in public places is also prohibited, though there will be no restriction on their sale.

Places of worship will remain open only between 5 am and 8 pm and the number of persons at any given time shall will not exceed 20 with due distancing.

Langar and prasad are allowed and SOPs for religious places shall be followed.

Restaurants are allowed to open till 10 pm with 50 per cent occupancy or 50 guests, whichever is less. Liquor can be served provided the restaurant has a valid permission from the Excise Department. However, bars shall remain closed.

Restaurants will be open to persons other than hotel guests but the timings, for both the hotel guests as well as persons from outside, will be till 10 pm. Liquor can be served in rooms and restaurants, as permitted under the excise policy of the state.

Marriages, other social functions and 'open air' parties in banquet halls, marriage palaces, hotels and open venues can be organised, say the guidelines, adding that the number of guests, exclusive of the catering staff, will not exceed 30 persons.

The size of a banquet hall and venue will at least be 3,000 sq feet to ensure social distancing.

All shopping malls and shops, including those in main bazars of urban and rural areas, will be allowed to open between 7 am and 8 pm. However, restaurants/ hotels situated within shopping malls are to be treated separately and can remain open till 10 pm.

Liquor vends shall, however, remain open from 8 am to 10 pm.

For shops situated in the main bazaars, market complexes, 'rehri' markets and other crowded places, district authorities can exercise their discretion and in order to avoid crowding shall stagger the opening of shops.

Barber shops, saloons, beauty parlours and spas will be allowed from 7 am to 8 pm, subject to the compliance of the SOPs to be issued by the state Health Department.

Shops dealing with essential commodities will be allowed to open till 8 pm on all days. Restaurants and liquor vends will continue to remain open till 10 pm on all days.

On Sundays, shops other than those dealing in essential commodities and shopping malls shall remain closed.

However, on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan which falls on August 2, all shops and malls will remain open from 7 am to 8 pm.

Sports complexes, stadia and public parks will be allowed to open from 5 am to 8 pm without spectators as per the SOP of the Health Department.

As per the state's guidelines, industrial units and construction activities are allowed. No separate permission will be required by the industries and other establishments for their operations and all employees will be allowed without any pass requirement during the permitted hours.

Inter-state and intra-state movement of buses will be allowed without any restriction. There shall be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods and no separate permission or approval or permit will be required for such movement. PTI SUN VSD RDK RDK