In what would come as a major relief for owners of gyms and fitness centres, the Ministry of Home Affairs has allowed yoga institutes and gymnasiums to open from August 5, 2020. This came as part of its guidelines for Unlock 3.0.
The MHA said in the guidelines that a standard operating procedure (SOP) will be issued by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MOHFW) for ensuring physical distancing and to contain the spread of COVID-19.
This comes as a relief to several gym owners and fitness trainers who have been facing massive financial losses after having been shut for nearly five months since March.
Several gym owners that TNM spoke to said that they are prepared to open once the government allows them to and that they are ready to take all necessary precautions if they are allowed to open. This includes physical distancing, regular sanitisation, temperature checks, among others. Some are also considering making wearing masks and gloves mandatory.
The MHA has also said that schools, coaching institutes, cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditorium, assembly halls and similar places will continue to remain shut.
Social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other large congregations also will continue to remain prohibited.
However, it is pertinent to note that a lockdown in containment zones will continue till August 21, 2020. The MHA said that these Containment Zones will be notified on the website of the respective District Collectors and by the States UTs and information will also be shared with MOHFW.
Activities in the Containment Zones shall be monitored strictly by State and UT authorities, and the guidelines relating to containment measures in these zones shall be strictly implemented. Within the containment zones, strict perimeter control shall be maintained, and only essential activities allowed
Containment Zones are required to be carefully demarcated by the state and UT governments with a view to contain the spread of COVID-19 after taking into consideration the guidelines issued by MOHFW.