Continuing its strategy of easing Covid restrictions in a graded manner, the Tamil Nadu government today announced further relaxations while extending curbs till September 9.
Under the new set of relaxations announced by Chief Minister M K Stalin, theatres have been given the go-ahead to open at 50 per cent capacity from Monday. Theatres have been directed to ensure their staff is vaccinated.
Schools have received the nod to resume offline classes for Classes IX-XII from September 1 in adherence to Covid protocol. The schools can also serve students with food under the noon meal scheme. A decision on resuming offline classes for Classes I-VIII will be taken after September 15.
Colleges and polytechnic institutes can open on rotation basis from September 1 as per the guidelines the government will issue for them. These establishments have been asked to ensure that faculty and staff members are vaccinated.
Bars in hotels and clubs have got the nod to open, provided staff members have received the Covid jab.
Beaches will now be open to the public and authorities must ensure vaccination of vendors and shopkeepers.
The government has also allowed botanical and zoological parks to open in adherence to Covid SOP.
Offices of IT companies can now function with 100 per cent staff attendance.
For now, swimming pools can open only for sports training; trainees above the age of 18 and trainers must have received the Covid vaccine.
Shops, earlier allowed to stay open till 9 pm, have received a one-hour relaxation and can now operate till 10 pm.
Bus services to Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka have been given the green signal to resume operations with Covid SOP.
The second wave of Covid infections had pushed up the case counts in Tamil Nadu to beyond the 36,000 mark. Over the past one month, daily case counts have remained below the 2,000 mark.
In the state bulletin issued yesterday, 1,668 new Covid cases and 24 deaths were recorded over the past 24 hours. The number of active cases stands at 19,864.
As per the Union Health Ministry data, over 2.80 crore doses of Covid vaccines have been administered in Tamil Nadu so far and over 52 lakh people have received both doses.