The government is likely to allow metro services across the country to resume operation as part of unlock 4.0 guidelines. Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) will soon be releasing guidelines for the fourth phase of opening up of lockdown and is expected to allow the resumption of metro services, news agency PTI reported.

Metro rail services may be allowed from September 1 when the ‘Unlock 4’ phase in the graded reopening from the coronavirus-induced lockdown begins, but schools and colleges will not reopen immediately, PTI quoted an official as saying. The final call to resume metro services will, however, depend on the state governments..

Delhi Metro is likely to resume operation from September 1, but with extensive restrictions, reports NDTV. The talk of opening the Delhi Metro gained momentum following a request from Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who contended that the coronavirus situation in Delhi has improved.

“I have requested the Centre that Delhi should be treated differently,” Mr Kejriwal said yesterday at an online meet with traders, entrepreneurs and businessmen

Metro services were suspended in late March to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus, which has infected more than 31 lakh people in the country so far. 

In the ”Unlock 4” guidelines, the central government will only mention about prohibited activities and the rest can resume.

The official said there will be no reopening of schools and colleges immediately, but deliberations are underway on whether to allow reopening of higher educational institutions such as universities, IITs and IIMs. No decision has been taken on the matter yet, the official added.

There is almost no possibility of allowing cinema halls to reopen from September 1 as it will not be commercially viable for film-makers or cinema hall owners to operate following social distancing norm, another official said.

The state governments will take a final call on additional activities that should continue to remain prohibited during the ”Unlock 4”, the official said.

The Unlock 4 guidelines is expected to be issued later this week.

The strict enforcement of lockdown in containment zones will continue across India.

As of now, among the prohibited activities are Metro rail services, cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places.

Social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other large congregations are also likely to remain prohibited next month.

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