The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has released new Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in which it has mentioned that the theatres/cinema halls/multiplexes in the country is permitted to run with 100% occupancy from February 1. The cinema halls in the country had reopened in October last year with 50% occupancy owing to the ongoing pandemic. I&B Ministry has also clearly cited that it is not permitted to exhibit films in containment zones. Theatres To Reopen From October 15; Prakash Javadekar Announces SOPs For Cinema Halls.

There have been a series of guidelines issued by I&B Ministry for cinema halls and theatres in order to contain the further spread of COVID-19. The SOPs issued include general guidelines on public health measures, screening of visitors and staff to be carried out at entry and exit points, seating arrangements, physical distancing norms, air-conditioning settings, staggered show timings at multiplexes, and much more. Talking about the seating arrangement, it has been cited, “Seating arrangement inside the auditorium of the cinemas/theatres/multiplexes is to be allowed upto 100% seating capacity.” It also mentions, “Frequent sanitization of the entire premises, common facilities, and all points which come into human contact shall be ensured.” 50% Occupancy Cap At Theatres Lifted; Revised SOPs To Be Announced Soon.

SOPs To Be Adhered

Owing to the rising number of cases in the country, the theatres had to be shut down. This not only impacted a huge loss for the film exhibitors, but even makers of films were at loss as it affected a delay in release of movies. As there was no clarity back then by when theatres, cinema halls will reopen, many producers opted for OTT platforms to release their films. There are many biggies waiting to be released and with this 100% occupancy permit, it would be a relief for exhibitors and film producers as well.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jan 31, 2021 08:31 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website