The lockdown measures in the containment zones stand extended up to June 30, West Bengal Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha said on Monday.
Malls, restaurants and places of worship opened in Kolkata and other parts of West Bengal. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said 25 persons would be allowed to enter the places of worship at a time. The number of people allowed for marriage ceremonies and funerals had been extended to 25, she said. The State government had announced earlier that schools, colleges and other educational institutions as well as the anganwadi centers would remain closed till June 30.
Ms. Banerjee also said the Kolkata police were considering allowing relaxations for cycling. The State government offices had asked for attendance of 70% employees but private transport remained a challenge. The Chief Minister said a new protocol for disposal of bodies of the COVID-19 patients had been initiated where family members would be allowed to go near the deceased for a brief period of time.
As the number of cases went up, the State government increased the salary of junior doctors and interns in the State-run hospitals. Over the past few days, the State government had been reporting more than 400 COVID-19 cases and over 10 deaths.
BJP-TMC fight spills on street
As businesses and other economic activities started opening up, the political tensions between the BJP and the Trinamool Congress spilled on the streets in Kolkata’s Lake town area on Monday.
Rajarhat BJP MLA Sabyasachi Dutta was allegedly heckled by TMC supporters when he was trying to visit supporters in the area. His supporters and security guard sustained injuries. Mr. Dutta lodged an FIR at a local police station. The TMC leadership denied any involvement.