Kerala govt issues SOP for opening of places of worship, malls, hotels from June 9

Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], June 5 (ANI): Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Friday announced that places of worship, shrines, shopping malls, hotels, hospitality units, restaurants and offices in Kerala will be open to the public from June 9.

These places can open on June 8 for cleaning and disinfecting, and make arrangements to receive the public from the next day.

"The Kerala government has decided to follow the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the Central government to open up these places," Vijayan said.

People aged over 65 and children below 10 are advised to stay at home as per the central guidelines. "Use of masks, handwashing with soap, use of sanitiser, wherever possible; maintaining six feet distance, thermal checking of temperature, maintenance of registers, and separate entry and exit points are some of the general guidelines mentioned in the SOP issued by the central government, " he said.

Apart from these general guidelines, the state government has come out with a few additional instructions to be followed at all these public places.

1. Distribution of food, refreshments and offertory blessings (prasadam) in places of worship should be avoided.

2. Do not give sandalwood paste or ashes from a plate.

3. No handshake or physical touching during ceremonies.

4. Depending on the size of the place of worship, social distancing arrangements to be made to accommodate about 15 people per 100 square meters, subject to a maximum of 100 people at a time.

5. Collect the name and phone number of the persons who come to the places of worship. They should bring their own pen.

6. Work from home should be provided to those living in containment zones.

7. Lift operators must be present so that everyone does not press the lift buttons.

8. Railings on ramps and stairs should not be touched. Hearing-impaired persons must wear gloves.

9. Offices should make arrangements for submitting grievances online and have a mechanism for answering these complaints online. Visitors should refrain from submitting complaints directly.

10. Malls also should fix the maximum number of people who can be there at a time. They should record the name and phone number of visitors.

11. The plates and glasses served in hotels, restaurants, tea shops and juice shops must be washed in hot water.

12. Sabarimala visit will be managed by 'virtual queue system' with not more than 50 people at one time. A thermal scanner will be installed at Nilakkal, Pampa and Sannidhanam. "Use of mask is mandatory. Gloves and masks will be compulsory for Devaswom employees. Children below the age of 10 years and those above 65 years of age will not be allowed as per central guidelines. Priests should not distribute prasadam," the government said. (ANI)