The Home Ministry has now allowed movie theatres to reopen with 50% capacity from 15 October. But notably only in areas that fall outside containment zones. The standard operating procedures for the same will be issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
Swimming pools for training of sportspersons have also been allowed to open.
The latest guidelines also say that ”social, academic, sports, entertainment, cultural, religious, political functions and other congregations that had already been permitted with a ceiling of 100 people, may now extend to more people outside Covid-19 containment zones, if states and union territories wish to do so”.
“Theatres have to not only ensure all protocols are in place but wait for individual state approvals too,” film trade and exhibition expert Girish Johar pointed out. West Bengal is the only state to have issued individual orders. Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra said the cinemas will remain shut till 31 October.
“There may be regional films available but Hindi content will have to be explored,” Johar added.
“Millions of movie lovers, employees of the cinema exhibition sector, along with the entire film industry were eagerly awaiting this announcement. We are committed to ensure a safe, secure and a hygienic cinema going experience for the movie lovers of our country, as always, we would continue to assign top-most priority to the health and well-being of our guests and employees,” it said in a statement.