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Bengal Govt Shuts Down Malls, Restaurants, Gyms; Bazaars to Remain Open for Limited Hours

Representative image.

Representative image.

Shopping complexes, gyms, swimming pools, beauty parlours, bars, cinema halls, sports facilities and spas will remain closed.

Concerned over the steep surge in Covid-19 cases, West Bengal, where high-voltage assembly polls concluded on Thursday, has announced a partial shutdown.

As per the latest circular issued by State Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay, shopping complexes, gym, swimming pools, beauty parlours, bars, cinema halls, sports facilities and spas will remain closed while home deliveries and online services shall remain permitted.

Not the least marketplaces will be allowed to function only for five hours every day. In the morning, market places will be allowed to function from 7 AM - 10 am and in the afternoon it will be allowed from 3 PM to 5 PM.

“Until further orders, for the time being, the restrictions/prohibitions will be in force in West Bengal,” the latest circular issued by the state government reads.

All shopping complexes, malls, beauty parlours, cinema halls, restaurants and bars, sports complexes, gyms, spas, and swimming pools have been closed, while home deliveries and online services have been permitted.

“All social, cultural, academic, entertainment-related gathering and congregations shall remain prohibited. The market place will remain open only from 7 AM to 10 AM in the morning and 3 PM to 5 Pm in the afternoon. However, essential services like medical shops, medical equipment shops and grocery stores will remain open,” it says.

On May 2, during the electoral counting, all activities related to counting processes and victory rallies/processions will be guided by the guidelines already issued by the Election Commission of India.

“There should not be unnecessary congregations in the neighbourhoods close to counting halls. Any violation of these orders will be liable to be proceeded against as per provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and besides legal actions under Indian Penal Code,” the official order reads.

Recently, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee formed a six-member ‘Task Force’ to tackle the deteriorating COVID-19 situation in Bengal. The panel is headed by the chief secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay.

West Bengal has recorded 17,403 new cases over the last 24 hours (as of April 29).

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