Unlock 3: Schools to Remain Closed Till Aug 31, Independence Day Functions Allowed

The lockdown will continue to be implemented strictly in the containment zones till August 31.

New Delhi: Unlock 3, a new stage in the graded reopening of functions since the nationwide lockdown was imposed on March 25, will begin from August 1, the Ministry of Home Affairs announced on Wednesday.

Under Unlock 3, the night curfew will be removed and gyms will be allowed to open from August 5, the home ministry has said. The SOP for this will be released by the health ministry.

However, schools, colleges and coaching institutions will remain closed till August 31, 2020.

Among activities still banned – even outside containment zones – are metro rails, cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums and assembly halls. While large congregations are banned, Independence Day functions will be allowed with “social distancing and by following other health protocols.”

The new guidelines are reportedly based on feedback received from states and Union Territories, and consultations held with related central ministries and departments.

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International air travel of passengers will be permitted in a limited manner under the Vande Bharat mission. “Further opening up will take place in a calibrated manner,” the MHA said.

The lockdown will continue to be implemented strictly in the containment zones till August 31. State governments will have to demarcate containment zones, maintain strict perimeter control and allow only essential activities inside.

Shops will need to maintain adequate physical distancing among customers. Persons above 65 years of age, persons with co-morbidities, pregnant women, and children below the age of 10 years, have been advised to stay at home.

The MHA has reiterated its call to download the Aarogya Setu app in the latest release.