Hyderabad: Shopping malls, religious sites, hotels, and restaurants across Hyderabad reopened on June 8 after more than 77 days as the Telangana government began gradually lifting lockdown restrictions. That too, as coronavirus cases continue to soar.
The rising pace of virus is likely to affect businesses as malls, hotels. Restaurant owners are anticipating low footfalls.
However, malls, places of worship will not be open in COVID-19 containment zones or areas with a high count of positive cases.
“It will be a cautious opening up and not a spike. Though the precautionary measures like the disinfectant tunnel, social distancing, temperature measurement, washroom color coding, no contact ordering at food courts are of greater importance,” said the Forum Sujana Mall General Manager.
Initially, the number of people coming in would be half of those during the pre-pandemic times, mall owners said.
Safety guidelines like following social distancing protocols, wearing a mask, and installing the ‘Aarogya Setu’ mobile app has been made mandatory for people visiting shopping centres. Aarogya Setu is a self-assessment app that stops helps monitor their health and is proof that mall or restaurant entrant is devoid of corona symptoms. As these guidelines were announced, temples, shopping malls, hotels and restaurants began these preparations to enforce these protocols in the wake of lockdown relaxations.
The Ministry of Home Affairs has issued an elaborate set of new guidelines for “Unlock 1.0”, the first of three phases, to be followed as it looks to revitalise the pandemic-affected economy.
The Health Ministry also released the standard operating procedures (SOPs) for malls, restaurants and hotels as they plan to open these establishments under relaxed guidelines from today.
Hotel and restaurant owners encourage a contactless mode of ordering and digital payments using e-wallets. Hotels and hospitality services are maintaining proper records of the guest’s travel history and medical condition, along with ID and a self-declaration form from the customer.