June 8 is probably the most anticipated date for most of us as your favourite restaurants and malls in the Bengaluru city are ready to welcome footfall after months of inactivity. But how safe is it for you to step out amidst the public as the nation continues to tremble in the incessantly rising Covid cases?
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has announced the guidelines for 'Unlock 1' with the culmination of Lockdown 4.0, stating the reopening of malls, religious centers, hotels, and restaurants in its initial phase. As per the MHA's orders, schools and educational institutions can open only in July in Phase 2; while theatres, gyms, international flights, and metro can resume in its third phase.
No entry for Covid-stamped
In its latest order, the state government has asked shops, offices, malls, and other commercial establishments in Karnataka to prevent all Covid-stamped people from entering its premises, until they finish the quarantine period.
"They should not allow those with a quarantine stamp to enter before the end of their quarantine period or till they get a current COVID negative test report," said Chief Secretary TM Vijay Bhaskar in his order released on Wednesday, June 3.
The order is also applicable to all religious places, hotels, and other services that begin in Phase I of Unlock 1.
Safety in malls
As malls across the nation (except in containment zones) are ready to end its hibernation, from Monday, June 8, the mall operators as well as the public are required to strictly abide by the prescribed measures of personal hygiene.
The strict enforcement of the standard operating procedures (SOPs) in these places to ensure adequate physical distancing and sanitisation protocols is certainly to lead a never before post-lockdown shopping experience to the customers.
With a large number of people accessing the spot at a time, frequent cleaning of the surfaces, particularly the elevator buttons, escalator handrails, door handles, and other such things are to be ensured timely by the staff.
Most of the malls in Karnataka have stated the need for Aarogya Setu app for the entry of customers. The malls will only allow customers who have a green status on their Arogya Setu app.
The SOPs and guidelines followed by the malls are the same as those formulated by the Shopping Centre Association of India. These guidelines were submitted to the Karnataka government following its decision to let open the shopping services.
In addition to this, thermal screening will be conducted by the mall authorities. Hand sanitisers are to be installed in the entry and exit points, as well as in multiple areas across the malls.
Places of worship and restaurants
The same procedure will be strictly followed in restaurants, hotels, and religious centers.
After numerous days of parcel services, the hotels can now welcome its customers to dine inside. The staff and members should, therefore, ensure that the tables, chairs, menu cards are well sanitised after every customers' use.
All temples need to be sanitised every day with disinfectants, stated the Karnataka government, before its doors are opened for members of the public. Devotees are allowed to enter only after the thermal scanning and everyone should appear wearing the masks.
At least one-meter distance between two persons should be mandatorily ensured by the temple authorities. The order has also asked the temple staff to hire security guards to ensure this minimum distance and thermal screening procedures.