States cannot impose local lockdown restrictions outside containment zones and Metro rail services will resume from September 7 in a graded manner, announced the Centre in Unlock 4 guidelines, easing Covid-19 restrictions and opening up further activities in this phase of unlocking.
Sports, entertainment, religious, political functions, among other congregations, will be permitted with a ceiling of 100 people, with effect from September 21, said the government. However, the Centre noted that strict enforcement of lockdown in containment zones will continue till September 30.
Schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions will continue to remain shut for students and regular class activity up to September 30. Online/distance learning will continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged, said the government. Open air theatres will be allowed to open with effect from September 21.
Students of classes 9 to 12, said the Centre, may be permitted to visit their schools, in areas outside the Containment Zones only, on voluntary basis, for taking guidance from their teachers. This will be subject to written consent of their parents, the government added.
Cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres (excluding open air theatre) and similar places will continue to remain shut. International air travel is also not allowed.
Within the containment zones, strict perimeter control shall be maintained and only essential activities will be allowed.
The containment zones will be notified on the websites of the respective district collectors and by the states/UTs and information will also be shared with the Union home ministry.
The district authorities are advised to follow the guidelines to effectively break the chain of virus transmission. Strict containment measures will be enforced in these containment zones and only essential activities will be allowed, it said.
At an average, 69,558 new Covid-19 cases were reported in India every day over the past week, placing it above the seven-day daily case peak recorded in the US when the number touched 69,330 for the week ending July 25. On Friday, India reported 76,139 new cases of Covid-19, taking the total number of cases in the country to 3,458,186.
New cases in India have been rising at an alarming rate and have shown no signs of a let-up.