Gymnasiums and yoga institutes will open from August 5, night curfew will end even as educational institutions, metro rail services and cinema halls will remain shut till the end of August, according to the fresh guidelines for Unlock 3 issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs on July 29.
Swimming pools and entertainment parks to remain shut and all kinds of social, political or religious gatherings are prohibited.
The MHA said lockdown measures were to be strictly enforced in containment zones till August 31.
The lockdown first imposed in March in the wake of COVID-19 has been relaxed considerably over the past three months. The total number of cases has surged past 15 lakh and more than 34,000 deaths have been reported.
Gyms to open
“Yoga institutes and gymnasiums will be allowed to open from August 5, 2020. In this regard, the Standard Operating Procedure [SOP] will be issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for ensuring social distancing and to contain the spread of COVID-19,” the guidelines issued under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 said.
The Disaster Management Act was invoked for the first time in the country in March in the wake of the pandemic. The Unlock 2 guidelines issued on June 29 will be in force till July 31.
The MHA said Independence Day functions would be allowed with social distancing and by following other health protocols such as wearing of masks etc.
“After extensive consultation with States and union territories, it has been decided that schools, colleges and coaching institutions will remain closed till August 31,” the MHA said.
International air travel of passengers had been permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission, and “further opening up will take place in a calibrated manner.”
The MHA said only essential activities would be allowed in containment zones.
“Lockdown will continue to be implemented strictly in the containment zones till August 31. The containment zones are required to be carefully demarcated by the State/UT governments with a view to contain the spread of COVID-19, after taking into consideration the guidelines issued by the Health Ministry,” the MHA said.
The Home Ministry reiterated that States, based on their assessment of the situation, might prohibit certain activities outside the containment zones, or impose such restrictions as deemed necessary.
“However, there will be no restriction on inter-State and intra-State movement of persons and goods. No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements,” the MHA stated.
It said vulnerable persons, i.e., persons above 65 years, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10, were advised to stay at home, except for meeting essential requirements and for health purposes.
Trains and international air travel would continue to be allowed in a limited manner.
Malls, restaurants and religious places were allowed to open in all areas except containment zones from June 8.