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Maharashtra extends lockdown till June 30, allows many relaxations

All markets, market areas and shops, except malls, will be allowed to open in Maharashtra from June 5 on the odd-even basis in non-containment zones as the state government on Sunday announced phase-wise reopening under the “Mission Begin Again”.

However, religious places, shopping malls, hotels and restaurants will continue to remain closed.

While the state government has extended the till June 30, it preferred the new nomenclature as “Mission Begin Again”, a day after the Centre announced significant relaxations under ‘Unlock 1’.

Maharashtra is worst affected by the pandemic, reporting 65,168 cases and 2,197 deaths so far.

In a major relief, the state government allowed outdoor physical activities like morning walks and cycling.

Additionally, public places can now be used for individual exercises, excluding non-Covid-19 zones.

As per the new guidelines, all private offices can operate with up to 10 per cent of their employee strength as per the requirement from June 8 with others working from home.

Offices of the state government will function at 15 per cent strength or 15 persons whichever is more.

Self-employed persons like plumbers, electricians, pest control staff and technicians will be allowed to work, but they will have to follow social distancing norms and use masks and sanitisers. Garages can also function and customers can visit them with prior appointment.

Intra-district bus services will be allowed eith maximum 50 per cent capacity, but inter-district bus services will remain barred.

These activities will be permitted in the red zones of Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), including Mumbai, as well as Solapur, Pune, Aurangabad, Malegaon, Nashik, Dhule, Jalgaon, Akola, Amravati, Nagpur. However, such activities will not resume in Covid-19 containment zones, it said.

As of now, the government has decided against reopening educational institutions and against allowing operation of international air travel; metro rail; passenger movement by train and domestic air travel unless specially allowed through separate orders and standard operating procedure.

Cinema halls, gymnasiums,swimming pools, public parks, theatres, bars,auditoriums, assembly halls,religious places, beauty parlors, barber shops, salons, shopping malls, hotels, restaurants and other hospitality services will not be allowed to open.

However, inter-state and intra-state movement of medical professionals, sanitation personnel and ambulances will be allowed.

“Inter-state and inter-district movement of persons like stranded migrant workers shall continue to be regulated,” the guidelines said.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had on Saturday said ‘Unlock-1’ will be initiated in the country from June 8 under which the nationwide effectuated on March 25 will be relaxed to a great extent, including opening of shopping malls, restaurants and religious places, even as strict restrictions will remain in place till June 30 in the country.

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