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Delhi bans public gatherings, limits wedding guests to 50 & reduces metro capacity to 50%

Amid a surge in Covid cases in Delhi, attendance at funerals will be limited to 20 people. Public buses will also operate at 50% capacity.

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New Delhi: Prohibition of all types of gatherings, reduced size of weddings and funerals, running of public transport at half seating capacity and scaled down presence in government offices were some of the restrictions imposed by the Delhi government on Saturday amid a surge in COVID-19 cases here.

An order issued by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), however, allowed students of class IX-XII to be called to schools for guidance by teachers. Except this, all Delhi government and private schools will remain closed till April 30, it said.

The Directorate of Education (DoE) said that the order issued by it on Friday suspending all academic and examination activities “stands”.

A negative RT-PCR report, not older than 72 hours prior to undertaking a journey, will be compulsory for persons arriving from Maharashtra to Delhi by air. Those found without a negative report will have to remain quarantine for 14 days, the order said.

The COVID-19 situation in Delhi has been assessed and it has been observed that there has been a persistent rise in cases during the recent past and therefore, it has became necessary to take certain emergency measures to prevent and contain the spread of the virus in the interest of public health, it stated.

The prohibited activities specified in the order came into force with immediate effect and will continue till April 30 or till further orders.

All schools, colleges, educational, training, coaching institutions will remain closed, the order stated.

However, students of classes IX to XII may be called to school only for academic guidance and support for exams, practicals, internal assessment and project works. This will be done with the consent of parents and by following the prescribed standard operating procedure issued by the Directorate of Education, it said.

All social, political, sports, entertainment, academic , cultural or religious, festival related and other gatherings and congregations will be prohibited, the order said.

It said all swimming pools, except those being used for training of sport persons for participation in national and international events, will be closed.

Funerals will be allowed to be attended by 20 persons only while gatherings for marriages will have an upper limit of 50 persons.

Previously, up to 200 and 100 persons were allowed in open and closed venues, respectively, for wedding ceremonies. Up to 50 persons were allowed at funeral gatherings.

Restaurants and bars are allowed up to 50 per cent of their seating capacity, stated the order.

The Delhi Metro will run at 50 per cent of coach capacity. The DTC and Cluster buses too will run at half their capacity, stipulated the order.

Currently, public buses are allowed to run with full seating capacity although passengers beyond number of seats are not allowed. In metro trains passengers can sit on alternate seats only.

Stadiums can organise sports events but spectators will not be allowed.Cinemas, theaters, multiplexes will be permitted to open with up to 50 per cent of their seating capacity, the order said.

All Delhi government offices will function with 50 per cent employee strength, except Grade-I officers. The remaining staff will work from home, it said.

However, health and family welfare and all-related medical establishments, police, prisons, home guards, civil defence, fire and emergency services, district administration, pay and account office, electricity, water and sanitation, disaster management and municipal services will function without any restrictions, the order said.

Private offices are advised to stagger office timings and attendence of employees and follow the practice of work from home, as far as possible, it said.

There will be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods, the order stated.

Also read: Mini lockdowns, night curfews, migrants squeezed into trains — feels like yesterday once more


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