Chennai, January 4: Cinema halls in Tamil Nadu are back in business with the audiences returning after more than 10 months to enjoy their favourite entertainment. The  state government of Tamil Nadu led by Chief Minister K Palaniswami on Monday gave permission to increase the seating capacity of cinemas, theatres, multiplexes from existing 50% to 100% following COVID-19 protocols. The state government had allowed using upto 50% seats in cinema theatres, multiplexes, zoos and amusement parks from November 10.

In October, the Centre had allowed multiplexes, cinema halls and theatres to reopen within the framework of a set of standard operating procedures (SOPs). The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) left it to states to take a final call on the matter. The SOPs mandated by the Union government include one seat distance in halls, 50 per cent capacity, masks at all time, proper ventilation and air conditioner temperature settings at above 23 degrees Celsius.

In Tamil Nadu, Palaniswami extended the COVID-19 lockdown by month till January 31, subject to certain relaxations including permission to hold indoor social/religious/ political/sports/education/cultural gatherings subject to a maximum of 200 persons or 50 percent seating capacity from January 2021. Permission has been given to carry out movie or tele serial shooting without any maximum ceiling on the people working, as well as removing restrictions on worship time at places of worship.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jan 04, 2021 01:11 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website