“Life Not Back To Normal,” Says Bengal As Lockdown Restrictions Eased

Standalone sweet shops, tea stalls and paan shops have been allowed to open. (File)


As the coronavirus lockdown eases to revive the economy, the West Bengal government on Monday expressed concern while rolling back the restrictions on multiple fronts; none of these will be applicable in containment zones.

“Life is not back to normal. The lockdown is on till May 17,” Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha said before listing the relaxations.

Standalone sweet shops, tea stalls and paan shops can open between 10 am to 6 pm. No gatherings will be allowed at these shops. Intra-district bus services are to be allowed in green zones, with 50 per cent capacity. “Buses must be disinfected regularly,” said Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha.

Industrial activity with reduced workforce is permitted and also mining. Construction is allowed everywhere in rural areas; however in urban blocks, it’s allowed with certain conditions.

Private offices can operate between 10 am and 6 pm, with 25 per cent workforce. Private cars can ply with driver plus two passengers but may do so after getting an e-pass. Barber shops and salons may open in green zones. Malls will remain shut from now.

A maximum of seven people may gather for social functions. At shops, post offices and banks, not more than seven people may be permitted inside at once. No rallies or processions are allowed.

Police have been asked to strictly enforce the rules.

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