Unlock 4.0: Sports, religious gatherings are now permitted under new MHA guidelines
Unlock 4.0: Sports, religious gatherings are now permitted under new MHA guidelines

The Union Home Ministry on Saturday issued the Unlock 4 guidelines under which political, social and religious congregations of up to 100 people will be permitted from September 21.

According to the guideline, "Social, academic, sports, entertainment, cultural, religious, political functions and other congregations will be permitted with a ceiling of 100 persons, with effect from 21st September 2020."

Such limited gatherings can be held with the mandatory wearing of face masks, social distancing, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer, the guidelines said.

Meanwhile, Metro rails will start operating from September 7 in a graded manner.

Schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions, on the other hand, will remain closed for students till September 30, with some relaxations for students of classes 9 to 12.

In a significant directive, the Home Ministry said that state governments shall not impose any local lockdown outside the containment zones without prior consultation with the central government.

The ministry said that states and Union Territory governments may permit up to 50 per cent of teaching and non-teaching staff to be called to the schools at a time for online teaching or tele-counselling and related work.

Students of classes 9 to 12 may be permitted to visit their schools in areas outside the containment zones only on a voluntary basis for taking guidance from their teachers.

This will be subject to the written consent of their parents or guardians, according to the guidelines.

Metro rail will be allowed to operate with effect from September 7 in a graded manner, by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MOHUA), the Ministry of Railways (MOR), in consultation with the MHA.

In this regard, Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) will be issued by the MOHUA.

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