With the sharp rise in COVID-19 and specially with the Omicron scare being around, the West Bengal government on Sunday announced a new set of lockdown-like guidelines.

The new guidelines will be effective from January 3.

The new Covid-19 norms announced in West Bengal stated that all academic activities in schools, colleges, and universities shall remain closed. Only administrative activities shall be permitted with 50% of employees at a time.

All government, private offices and establishments offices including public undertakings will function with 50 percent capacity.

The new rules also said that work from home shall be encouraged as far as possible.

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It added that swimming pools, spas, gyms, beauty parlours, salons, and wellness centres shall remain closed. All entertainment parks, zoos and tourist places will also remain closed.

Shopping malls, market complexes, cinema halls and theatre halls may function with a restricted entry of people by not exceeding 50 % of the capacity at a time and up to 10 PM.

Restaurants and bars “may operate” with 50% of capacity at a time and up to 10 PM.

Meetings and conferences shall be allowed with a maximum of 200 people at a time or 50% seating capacity of the hall, whichever is lower.

Not more than 50 persons at a time shall be allowed for any social, religious, and cultural gatherings.

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Not more than 50 persons shall be allowed for marriage-related ceremonies while for funeral and burial services, only 20 persons were allowed.

Local trains shall operate with 50% seating capacity up to 7 PM only but metro services will operate with 50% seating capacity as per usual operational time.

Movement of people and vehicles and public gatherings of any kind shall be prohibited between 10 PM to 5 AM. Only essential and emergency services will be permitted.

On Saturday, West Bengal reported 4,512 fresh infections which is 1,061 more than the previous day. Kolkata alone reported 2,398 fresh cases.

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