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Amid Rise in Covid Cases, Maha Govt Issues Fresh Curbs for Malls & Hotels; Cap on Gatherings

With over over 15,000 fresh cases, the Maharashtra government on Monday extended restrictions imposed in containment zones till March 31 and issued fresh guidelines for the state. All offices in the state, except health and other essential services, will have to function at 50 per cent capacity. As far as possible, employees should be asked to work from home, the notification said.

While all restaurants, hotels, malls and cinema halls have also been advised to operate at half their strength, they will further have to ensure adequate manpower to enforce mask wearing and social distancing. Temperature checks and sanitising of hands have also been made mandatory at these places.

In case of violations, owners will attract penalties under the Disaster Act and such premises would have to remain shut as long as the pandemic stays notified as a ‘disaster’ by the central government.

A cap of 50 people has been levied for weddings, and all other public gatherings – social, cultural, political and religious – have been banned. Not more than 20 people will be allowed at funerals, according to the fresh guidelines.

In the case of home isolation, the patient must inform local authorities about the medical professional under whose supervision he or she is. A board will be put up on the door for 14 days indicating the presence of COVID-19 patient at the location. Patients will be stamped “home quarantine” on the hand.

If patients violate these norms, they will be shifted to COVID care centres. Management bodies of all religious places have been asked to decide and declare the maximum number of visitors per hour they will allow, depending on the availability of space for movement and gatheringwith proper distancing.

Maharashtra reported 15,051 new coronavirus cases on Monday, taking the state’s caseload to 23,29,464, while 48 fatalities took the death toll to 52,909, the health department said. As many as 10,671 coronavirus patients were discharged, taking the rally of recoveries to 21,44,743.

With 92,363 coronavirus tests conducted during the day, the total number of samples tested went up to 1,76,09,248. There are 1,30,547active cases in the state.

Mumbai city reported 1,713 new cases of infection, Pune city — 1,122, Aurangabad city — 657, Nagpur city — 2,094, Nashik city — 671. A weeklong lockdown is already in place in Nagpur district.

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