The Maharashtra government late on Wednesday night announced a series of restrictions – titled “Break the Chain” – to combat the deadly spike in coronavirus cases in the state. These rules will come into effect from 8 pm Thursday and stay in place till 7 am May 1.
Under the new rules, attendance at all private and government (centre and state) offices not directly connected to the management of the COVID-19 pandemic will be capped at 15 per cent.
Offices providing essential services should work at the “lowest required capacity” but can have no more than 50 per cent of their workforce present at any given time. Attendance of people delivering these services should be similarly minimised but this can go up to 100 per cent, if needed.
Attendance at weddings and marriage ceremonies has been capped at 25. These ceremonies may be conducted “only as a single event in a single hall not extending beyond 2 hours”.
Violation of this rule, the state government’s order said, would incur a fine of ? 50,000.
Use of private vehicles, excluding buses, will only be allowed for essential services or valid reasons, like medical emergencies, with driver + 50 per cent of seating capacity. Private vehicles will not be allowed to travel inter-city or inter-district unless it is an emergency or is required for essential services.
Violation of this rule will incur a fine of ? 10,000.
Private buses can run with a maximum of 50 per cent of seated capacity, with no standing travelers. Inter-city or inter-district travel by buses has also been regulated, with service operators directed to make no more than two stops in a city.
Service operators violating these guidelines can be fined up to ? 10,000, with repeated defaults leading to cancellation of license till the pandemic ends.