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Schools in Delhi reopen, cinema halls allowed to operate at full capacity

Students attend classes while maintaining all Covid protocols as schools reopened in Delhi on Monday.

Delhi schools reopened on Monday after having remained shut for 19 months due to the coronavirus pandemic. Students wearing masks went through temperature checks at the school gates as strict Covid-19 protocols were in place on the first day.

The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) had last week announced that schools would reopen for all classes from November 1.

Some schools in the capital have decided to reopen after the Diwali week is over. Even after reopening, teaching and learning would continue in both online and offline mode, the DDMA has said.

According to the DDMA guidelines, only 50 per cent students will be allowed in a classroom. There will be mandatory thermal screening, staggered lunch breaks, and alternate seats would have to be kept empty to maintain social distancing.

Students, teachers and non-teaching staff living in Covid containment zones will not be allowed to come to schools and colleges.

The DDMA’s order has also allowed cinema halls and theatre to reopen with 100 per cent seating capacity in the capital but stated that owners of cinema halls, theatres and multiplexes will be responsible for strict adherence to standard operating protocol and official guidelines as well as Covid-appropriate behaviour at the premises.

Restaurants, bars, auditoriums, and assembly halls can operate with 50 per cent capacity.

Besides, DDMA has also allowed all the authorised weekly markets in the city to reopen from November 1.

Meanwhile, the daily count of fresh Covid-19 cases in Delhi was 37 on Sunday. An equal number of fresh infections were recorded on Saturday as well. However, with 22 new recoveries, the figure witnessed a dip on Sunday.

Delhi ended the month of October by reporting only four deaths due to coronavirus disease (Covid-19), the lowest since the pandemic struck in March 2020, health bulletin data revealed on Sunday. With this, the death toll in the national capital remained at 25,091. The last fatality in the city was reported on October 22, the bulletin data showed.

While the number of Covid-19 cases in Delhi has come down, the authorities are keeping their fingers crossed as huge crowds are thronging markets in the festive shopping season. This could lead to an increase in infections.