Maharashtra: Mumbai Metro trains to resume from October 19; schools, colleges to stay closed till October-end

Updated: 15 October, 2020 12:36 IST | Dharmendra Jore | Mumbai

Maharashtra government relaxes restrictions further, allows govt, private libraries, local weekly bazaars to reopen

Alternate seating stickers on a Mumbai Metro One train, as tweeted in May
Alternate seating stickers on a Mumbai Metro One train, as tweeted in May

The state government on Wednesday announced further relaxations in restrictions and has allowed Metro trains to resume services. Metro One has said it will begin running from Monday, October 19.

The state government on Wednesday announced further relaxations in the restrictions imposed in the wake of COVID-19 and has allowed a few more facilities to resume outside the containment zones from Thursday.

Shops in the city can now stay open two hours more till 9 pm
Shops in the city can now stay open two hours more till 9 pm

Mumbai's only Metro rail services between Ghatkopar and Versova can resume in a graded manner, and the Urban Development Department will issue the guidelines.

Besides, government and private libraries and local weekly bazaars, including cattle markets, have been allowed to reopen. Working hours for shops have been increased by two hours till 9 pm.

While Metro One has permission to start operations from today, it said it needed a few days to get things in order
While Metro One has permission to start operations from today, it said it needed a few days to get things in order

Meanwhile, the city's suburban trains remain exclusively available for the government-approved workers, others like dabbawalas and accredited journalists, while underprivileged commuters continue to wait for their turn.

Domestic air passengers will be checked for symptoms, but won't be stamped for home quarantine anymore. Long-distance railway passengers won't face either health checks or home quarantine stamp. The government urged the rail passengers to follow the COVID-19 protocol of physical distancing and sanitation.

Business to business (B2B) exhibitions will be allowed to open under the guidelines of the industries department.

Schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions will remain closed for on-campus classes till October-end. However, labs in the science and technology institutes may restart from Thursday for research scholars and post-graduate students.

Metro trains to begin ops from October 19

A Mumbai Metro One spokesperson said, " Mumbai Metro One will start operations in a graded manner from Monday, October 19, from 8.30 am to 8.30 pm. Metro One has devised critical measures to ensure that services are safe for everyone on the Metro premises."

When asked if the services would be thrown open for the general public, an official said that directions were awaited from the state government.

Some key initiatives include necessary arrangements to maintain social distancing at all touch points such as station entry gates, ticketing counters, frisking areas, platforms and trains. Commuters will be requested to occupy alternate seats and stand on designated floor markers inside the trains.

Every entrant in Metro station will be screened through thermal screening devices. Commuters will be encouraged to opt for digital tickets, smart cards or paper QR tickets.

Temperatures inside the coaches will be maintained at 25-27 degree C. Sanitisers will be made available at various points inside the stations for all commuters.

Entry points at every station will be limited in order to ensure effective crowd management, screening and further movement into station areas

- Rajendra B. Aklekar

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First Published: 15 October, 2020 06:38 IST

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