West Bengal allows cinema halls to operate from October 1

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Mamata Banerjee allows Cinema Hall reopening
Mamata Banerjee allows Cinema Hall reopening

Kolkata : West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday announced that the operation of theatres and cinema halls will be resumed from October 1. Adherence to social distancing norms and other Covid-19 guidelines is mandatory for them, the chief minister said.

The relaxations have been announced days before the major Durga Puja celebrations, which will begin from October 22. A maximum of 50 people will be allowed to participate in these gatherings, Banerjee tweeted on Saturday evening.

"To return to normalcy, jatras, plays, open air theatres, cinemas and all musical, dance, recital and magic shows shall be allowed to function with 50 participants or less from 1 October, subject to adherence to physical distancing norms, wearing of masks and compliance to precautionary protocols," Banerjee tweeted.

The Central government, on the other hand, has not allowed reopening of movie theatres, which were closed in March due to lockdown in the nation. However, cinema is a state subject in India.

Multiplex and single screen owners have run social media campaigns throughout September in protest against the denial of reopening permits to them.

Meanwhile, Covid-19 cases in India neared the six million-mark on Sunday with 88,600 people getting infected with the virus in 24 hours. As many as 94,503 people have died due to the virus in the country.