Government permits 100% occupancy in cinema halls and theatres from February 1 with new SOPs

Cinema hall owners can finally rejoice as the central government has permitted 100% occupancy from February 1 onwards. The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, on Saturday, issued a new set of guidelines for theatres and cinema halls to operate at 100% seating capacity. "Seating arrangement inside the auditorium of the cinemas/theatres/multiplexes is to be allowed upto 100% seating capacity," a statement read. 

The new guidelines instructed cinema hall owners to ensure that physical distancing of at least 6 feet is followed outside auditoriums, common areas and waiting areas at all times. The audience must use face covers and masks at all times. Hand sanitisers, preferably in the touch-free mode, should be made available at entry and exit points as well as common areas within the premises. One should strictly cover the mouth and nose while coughing or sneezing with a tissue/ flexed elbow and dispose off used tissues properly.

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Apart from this, self-monitoring of health will be mandatory. If some person falls ill, they should report it at the earliest to the state and district helpline. Installation and use of the Aarogya Setu App will be advised to all.

Around 10,000 theatres closed in mid-March due to the sudden outbreak of COVID-19. In October, cinemas/theatres/multiplexes were permitted to operate with 50% capacity. 

(Source: News18)