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As theatres return to 100% occupancy, here are the preventive measures they will need to implement to prevent the spread of Covid-19

Feb 1, 2021, 11:11 IST
Ministry of Information & Broadcasting releases SOPs for cinema halls, theatres on preventive measures against Covid-19
  • As theatres return to 100% occupancy today, MIB issues new guidelines.
  • As per the order, cinema halls will have distanced seats, staggered show timings, and bookings, mandatory social distancing, and encourage digital payments.
The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting on January 31 released Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for cinema halls and theatres on preventive measures to contain the spread of Covid-19.

Last week, the government allowed full occupancy in cinema halls and multiplexes starting from February 1. Now that the theatres are returning to normal operations, MIB has issued SOPs, which are as follows:

  • Adequate physical distancing of at least 6 feet to be followed outside the auditoriums, common areas and waiting areas at all times.
  • Use of face covers/masks to be made mandatory at all times.
  • Availability of hand sanitizers, preferably in the touch-free mode, at entry and exit points as well as common areas within the premises.
  • Respiratory etiquettes to be strictly followed. This involves strict practice of covering one’s mouth and nose while coughing/sneezing with a tissue/handkerchief/flexed elbow and disposing off used tissues properly.
  • Self-monitoring of health by all and reporting any illness at the earliest to state and district helpline. vi. Spitting shall be strictly prohibited.
  • Installation & use of Aarogya Setu App shall be advised to all.
Entry & Exit points
  • Thermal screening of visitors/staff is to be carried out at entry points. Only asymptomatic individuals shall be allowed to enter the premises.
  • Provisions for hand sanitization should be made available at all entry points and in work areas.
  • Designated queue markers shall be made available for entry and exit of the audience from the auditorium and the premises.
  • The Exit should be done in a staggered row-wise manner to avoid crowding.
  • Sufficient time interval between successive screenings on a single screen as well as on various screens in a multiplex shall be provided to ensure row-wise staggered entry and exit of the audience.
Show timings

  • Staggered show timings shall be followed for multiple screens to avoid crowding.
  • The show commencement time, intermission period and finish time of a show at any screen shall not overlap with the commencement time, intermission period or finish time of a show at any other screen in a multiplex.
Booking and Payments

  • Digital no-contact transactions should be the most preferred mode for issue/verification/payments for tickets, food, and beverages, etc. by using online bookings, use of e-wallets, QR code scanners, etc.
  • Contact number shall be taken at the time of booking of tickets to facilitate contact tracing.
  • The purchase of tickets at the box office shall be open throughout the day and advance booking shall be allowed to avoid crowding at the sale counters.
  • Sufficient number of counters at the box office shall be opened with adequate physical distancing norms, to prevent crowding during physical booking of tickets.
  • Floor markers shall be used for physical distancing during queue management at the box office.
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