In the gradual reopening of the nationwide lockdown, the Health Ministry has released five fresh sets of SOPs for businesses and religious places to follow. These SOPs come into effect from Monday, June 8.
Offices, shopping malls, restaurants, religious places, and hotels will only open in non-containment zones. Across businesses, those above 65 years and other immuno-compromised individuals are advised to stay home. Building entrances must have hand hygiene and thermal screening.
The buildings must also maintain air conditioner temperature between 24 degrees and 30 degrees C, and humidity between 40 per cent and 70 per cent.
SOPs for offices
* Only asymptomatic people are allowed to come in.
* Employers should stagger office hours and lunch breaks.
* Buildings should preferably have separate entry and exit.
SOPs for religious places of worship
* Touching of statues, idols, and holy books is not allowed
*Shoes should be taken off in own vehicle
* Choirs or singing groups are not allowed; recorded devotional music should be played instead
* Public should bring their own mats
* No physical offerings, prasaad, or holy water allowed
* Avoid physical contact when greeting
SOPs for shopping malls
* Mall management shall deploy adequate manpower to ensure social distancing norms
* The number of customers inside a shop is to be kept at a minimum
* Only 50% of seating capacity is allowed in food areas
* On escalators, persons on alternate steps is encouraged
* Gaming arcades, children’s play areas, and cinema halls inside shopping malls shall remain closed
SOPs for restaurants
* Not more than 50% of seating capacity is to be permitted
* Takeaways instead of dine-in is encouraged
* Delivery persons should leave food packet at the door instead of handing the food packet to the customer
* Digital payments are encouraged
* Masks must be worn inside restaurants at all times
* Restaurants should stagger patrons if possible
* Disposable menus and paper napkins are advised, tables should be sanitised after every customer leaves
SOPs for hotels
* Guests must provide travel history, medical condition, self-declaration form, and ID to check in
* Establishments must have contactless processes as an option for check-in and check-out
* Luggage must be disinfected before being sent to rooms
If there is a suspected case in an office:
* The office should isolate the person and inform medical facility or helpline. The authority will assess risk and advise further.
* If there are many contacts of a pre-symptomatic or asymptomatic case, then contacts in close proximity should be quarantined for 14 days while low-risk contacts can continue to go to work.
* If there are two or fewer cases, only disinfect their area. If there is a larger outbreak, the whole building shall be closed for 48 hours of disinfection.
In a suspected case occurs in restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, or religious places:
* Establishments must isolate the person and inform the medical facility or helpline. The risk assessment from the authority will determine further actions.
* If the person is positive, the establishment must disinfect the premises.