Chennai: The Union Home Ministry has announced a detailed guideline for Unlock 5, or for reopening to be effective from 1 October. Despite a steep rise in the number of Covid-19 cases in the country, the Ministry has made it clear that there would be more relaxations and fewer restrictions, though local administrations in some States are heavily relying on voluntary curfew, local lockdowns etc.
In new guidelines issued on Wednesday night, the Ministry of Home Affairs has given State and UT governments flexibility to take a decision after 15 October on reopening of schools and coaching institutions, in a graded manner.
States and UTs will prepare their own SOP regarding health and safety precautions for reopening of schools, based on the SOP to be issued by Department of School Education and Literacy (DoSEL), Union Ministry of Education, keeping local requirements in view.
Where schools are conducting online classes, and some students prefer to attend online classes rather than physically attend school, they may be permitted to do so.
Students may attend schools or institutions only with the written consent of parents. Attendance must not be enforced, and must depend entirely on parental consent.
Cinemas/ theatres/ multiplexes will be permitted to open with upto 50% of their seating capacity, for which, SOP will be issued by Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.
Business to Business (B2B) Exhibitions will be permitted to open, for which, SOP will be issued by the Department of Commerce.
Swimming pools being used for training of sportspersons will be permitted to open, for which the standard operating procedure (SOP) will be issued by Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports (MoYA&S).
Entertainment parks and similar places will be permitted to open, for which the SOP will be issued by Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW) Department of Higher Education (DHE), Ministry of Education may take a decision on the timing of the opening of Colleges/ Higher Education Institutions, in consultation with Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), based on the assessment of the situation. Online/ distance learning shall continue to be the preferred mode of teaching and shall be encouraged.