The Gujarat government on Wednesday allowed hotels, restaurants, gyms and religious places to reopen with certain restrictions, and also permitted political and other kinds of programs with limited attendance during the period from June 11 to June 26. Hotels and restaurants can operate between 9 am to 7 pm during this period with 50 per cent sitting capacity. Until now only home delivery of food was allowed, but with a dip in new COVID-19 infections, the government decided to offer some relaxation, officials said. Parks, gardens and libraries were also allowed to reopen between 6 am to 7 pm, an official release said, adding that night curfew, however, will continue in 36 cities between 9 pm to 6 am. Political, social, religious and cultural programs can be held with a maximum of 50 persons in attendance during this period with compliance of Standard Operating Protocols (SOP) for safety. All religious places can remain open with no more than 50 visitors allowed to gather at a time during June 11 and June 26.
The decision to ease restrictions was announced after a meeting of the state's core committee on the pandemic, chaired by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani. Commercial establishments including shops were allowed to operate between 9 am to 7 pm against 9 am to 6 pm earlier. Gymnasiums can reopen with 50 per cent capacity by ensuring strict adherence to COVID-19 SOP between June 11 and June 26, the release said. In further relief to the hotel and restaurant sector, home delivery of food will be allowed till midnight during this period, against till 10 pm earlier. Public bus services including State Transport buses can continue to operate with 60 per cent passenger capacity. "All shops, commercial units, corner shops, shopping complexes, market yards, hair cutting salons, beauty parlors and other commercial activities can continue to operate from 9 am to 7 pm during this period, i.e., with a relaxation of one hour in the existing time limit," said the release. The government also allowed holding of tests such as IELTS and TOEFL which are required for admissions to colleges and universities in foreign countries.