As the Centre is rolling out Unlock 5.0 in a phased manner, West Bengal on Monday took several major decisions especially on re-opening of schools, colleges and cinema halls. The West Bengal government decided to extend certain lockdown measures till November 30 but included certain restrictions and relaxations during the period.

An official order read, “The government of West Bengal has from time to time issued orders for combating the spread of COVID-19. 
…the State Government has decided to extend certain lockdown measures till 30-11-2020…restrictions and relaxations shall apply during the period of lockdown.”

As per the decision taken by the Mamata Banerjee-led government, the teaching-learning physical assemblies in schools, anganwadis, colleges, and universities will continue to be disallowed. 

Swimming pools (except for use of training of sportspersons) will continue to remain closed. The Cinemas/Theatres/Multiplexes will operate with up to 50 per cent of their seating capacity in areas outside the containment zone only. 

Social/academic/sports/entertainment/cultural/Jatras/Plays/musical/ dance/recital/religious/political functions and other congregations may be allowed outside the Containment Zones after obtaining usual permissions from appropriate authorities, subject to observance of the SOP issued by the state government, read the order.

These conditions will have to be followed–a) In closed spaces, a maximum of 50% of the hag capacity will be allowed with a total of 200 persons; b) In open spaces, the assembly size may be fixed keeping the size of the ground/space in the view, and with strict observance of social distancing, the mandatory wearing of face masks, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer. 

In as cases, norms of physical distancing, wearing of masks, health and hygiene protocol must be strictly adhered to at all times.

The Railway authorities are keen to resume local train services in West Bengal allowing 50 per cent of passenger strength and ensuring that COVID-19 safety protocols are followed strictly, officials said on Monday after a meeting with to top state government officers. Initially, they were targeting to resume the operations with 10-20 per cent of the normal services which will be slowly increased to 25 per cent, they said.

The final decision on the resumption of local train services will be taken at a meeting with the state government on November 5. The authorities stopped local train services when the lockdown was announced in March to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. 

West Bengal on Monday reported the highest single-day recovery of 4,085 COVID-19 patients, taking the total number of cured people to 3,38,075, the health department said in a bulletin. The death toll mounted to 6,957 after 57 more people succumbed to the disease.

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The bulletin said that 3,957 people tested positive for the infection pushing the tally to 3,81,608. The number of active cases currently is 36,576. In the last 24 hours, 43,237 samples were tested for coronavirus in the state.

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