People who are missing dining outside have a good reason to cheer up. The restaurants and bars in Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai, and the rest of Maharashtra are all set to open from the first week of October.
With the present lockdown in Maharashtra coming to end on September 30, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday said that the state government has framed standard operating procedures (SOPs) for reopening of restaurants.
The chief minister interacted with representatives of associations of restaurateurs from Mumbai, Pune, Aurangabad, and Nagpur via video conferencing.
The state government will soon finalise the standard operating procedure (SOP) and only thereafter will a formal approval will be issued. "The state government has framed SOPs for reopening restaurants and those have been sent to the people concerned. A decision about reopening restaurants will be taken once these (SOPs) are finalised," the official statement quoted Thackeray as saying.
The hotels and restaurants will be allowed to operate at 50% of their capacity to obey the government norms for social distancing.
Thackeray laid emphasis on wearing masks, cleaning hands, and maintaining physical distance while living with COVID-19 and added these precautions need to be taken when restaurants are reopened. "It will be important to take care of the health of chefs and other staffers in restaurants. They must wear masks, clean hands, and ensure safety and cleanliness in restaurants," the chief minister said.
Restaurants and bars in the state have been closed down for six months since the lockdown and only takeaways and home delivery were allowed.
The Maharashtra government's announcement came with a view of the Centre's upcoming fresh set of guidelines under the Unlock 5 plan to open the economy gradually amid the COVID-19 pandemic for October, according to an official statement.