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India: Regulations under Unlock 4

India is to enforce "Unlock 4" action plan from 1 September with more restrictive measures set to be lifted in the country's bid to bring normality back to life.

Jammu (India), 25/08/2020.- A paramedic takes a nasal swab sample from a boy in order to conduct a Rapid Antigen test as others stand in queue in Jammu, India, 25 August 2020. India's health authorities reported more than three million positive coron

The fourth phase of easing lockdown restrictions "Unlock 4" is set to commence in India on 1 September as the country is preparing to lift more restrictive measures. This process started back in July when the government decided to re-open some industrial activities and offices, that were previously closed due to Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, to revive its stagnant economy and bring some sense of normality back to daily life.

Throughout the previous phases, many restrictions have been eased including the gradual re-opening of shopping malls and places of worship as well as intra-state and inter-state travel.

However, schools, colleges, and other educational institutions remained shut due to the administration's fear of the further spread of coronavirus infection.

New regulations expected to be announced

The central government is to announce the new guidelines of Unlock 4 soon, with many easing steps expected to be included.

The Centre may give permission for stand-alone cinema halls to reopen in September while the multiplexes in malls are unlikely to re-open anytime soon. As per reports, the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Health Ministry have already prepared the Standard Operating Procedure (SOPs) which include staggered seating and contactless ticketing.

In addition, metro services are expected to resume starting the beginning of September. Different states however will be informed whether or not to resume metro services based on the spread of the infection in each state according to news reported by agency PTI.

News agency PTI quoted an official confirming there is no intention of immediate re-opening of schools and educational institutions, a decision on the reopening of higher educational institutions such as universities, IITs and IIMs might be made.

However, according to a media report, the government may soon announce a phase-wise plan for the resumption of the schools and educational institutions across the country, between September and 14 November.

International flights resume

Regular international flights are not expected to resume normally during Unlock Phase four, however, more flights are expected to be performed under Vande Bharat Mission, with more Air Bubble agreements set to be signed with more countries.


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