Bengal reimposes COVID restrictions: Schools shut, offices at 50% capacity

Chief Secretary HK Dwivedi says only essential services will be permitted between 10pm and 5am

West Bengal reported 4,512 fresh COVID-19 cases on Saturday, which is 1,061 more than the previous day, with Kolkata accounting for 2,398 new cases

The West Bengal government has imposed COVID-related restrictions again, amid a steep rise in cases, shutting all educational institutions from Monday and allowing offices to operate with 50 per cent workforce.

At a press conference on Sunday, Chief Secretary HK Dwivedi announced that only essential services will be permitted between 10pm and 5am.

“Local trains will be allowed to operate with 50 per cent capacity till 7pm, while all shopping malls and markets will be allowed to remain open till 10pm, but with half their capacities,” Dwivedi said.

Long-distance trains will run on schedule, and metro trains in Kolkata will also operate as per their usual timing, but with 50 per cent capacity.

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All tourist attractions will remain closed, so will swimming pools, parlours, spas, wellness centres and gyms.

Also read: India’s single-day COVID cases up by 21%, Omicron tally at 1,525

“Flights from Mumbai and New Delhi will ply only twice a week, and no flights from the UK will be allowed for the time being,” the chief secretary said.

Cinemas and theatres can operate at 50 per cent capacity. Meetings and conferences can have a maximum of 200 people at a time, or 50 per cent capacity, whichever is lower.

Bars and restaurants can stay open at 50 per cent capacity till 10pm; home delivery of food and other essential products is permitted.

“Not more than 50 persons shall be allowed in weddings, and only 20 persons will be allowed during funeral and burial services,” Dwivedi said.

Also read: Amid huge COVID spike, Centre asks states to set up makeshift hospitals

The government has asked the management of industries, factories, mills, tea gardens and other commercial establishments to ensure compliance with the guidelines.

West Bengal reported 4,512 COVID-19 cases on Saturday, 1,061 more than the previous day, with Kolkata accounting for 2,398 new cases.

(With inputs from Agencies)

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