Cinema halls allowed to operate at 100% seating capacity, new SOPs issued | Entertainment News,The Indian Express

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Starting February 1, movie theaters across the country will be allowed to operate at full capacity.

The Security Agreement, Information and Broadcasting Union (I&B) Minister Prakash Javadekar announced on Sunday.

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting released the latest SOP on Sunday, which included adequate physical distancing, mandatory masks and disinfection of the auditorium after each screening.

The minister said that digital ticket bookings and staggered performance times will be encouraged to avoid crowding, and a set of standard operating procedures (SOP) will be issued.

"There is good news. Since we allow all cinema seats to be used, people can watch and enjoy movies in the theater in February. The cinema hall can now be opened at 100% capacity. We encourage as many online reservations as possible ( Tickets)," Javadekar told reporters here.

This development comes a few days after the Ministry of Civil Affairs (MHA) allowed cinemas and theaters to operate with more people in accordance with new COVID-19 reopening guidelines.

Good news for movie lovers:

Today, a revised SOP for film screenings was released. From February 1st, the cinema will allow 100% occupancy rate, but all

The guidelines must be followed.

-Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar)

According to the new guidelines, no films are allowed to be shown in the containment area, and states and trade union regions can consider "proposing other measures" based on the evaluation results.

In order to minimize physical contact, digital transactions should be the "preferred method" for booking air tickets or paying. Contact phone number should be provided when booking tickets to facilitate contact.

The SOP wrote: "A sufficient number of counters should be opened at the ticket office, and appropriate physical evacuation regulations should be adopted to prevent congestion during the actual booking process."

Sufficient time intervals should be provided between consecutive screenings on a single screen and on each of multiple screens to ensure that "the audience's travel is staggered to enter and leave."

"Staggered performance times will be encouraged to better manage crowd access. Sanitation and all COVID-19 safety protocols must be followed.

The Producers Association of India, the Multiple Film Association of India (MAI), theater owners and film exhibitors welcome this.

"We welcome @MIB_India's decision to allow 100% cinema screenings from February 1st, and express our sincere gratitude to Mr. @PrakashJavdekar ji and all those involved in important steps to promote the industry's recovery," the guild said on Twitter.

"We are deeply grateful to Mr. Han. Minister @PrakashJavdekar and Minister @MIB_India have allowed 100% of the seats in the cinema since February 1. We would like to express our gratitude to Hon. Member @iamsunnydeol for his leadership and support," MAI issued tweets.

Gautam Dutta, CEO of PVR Limited, said in a statement: "This is ultimately welcome news, which will give a much-needed boost to the multiplexing industry. We thank the Ministry of Press and Broadcasting and the Ministry of Interior for their decision to allow 100% of the cinema seats. Capacity. India has well controlled the spread of the Covid-19 vaccine and large-scale vaccination. This move will give producers the confidence to show their long-awaited movies and allow viewers to return to the cinema to watch with their loved ones Favorite movie. PVR continues to put safety and hygiene first and abides by all SOPs set by the government in its cinemas."

Film exhibitor Akshaye Rathi wrote on Twitter: "From February 1st, the theater's screening space can reach 100%! Hope this will open the floodgates for the movie, announce the release date, and bring the audience back to the theater! #CinemasAreBack. "

The film exhibitor Vishek Chauhan posted on Twitter "The cinema allows 100% capacity... good news!!! Large movies can now be scheduled to be released without restrictions. #CinemasAreBack @MIB_India Thank you!"


, There should be hand sanitizers available at the entrance and exit-preferably non-contact.

According to the guidelines, all visitors and employees will be screened at the port of entry, and only asymptomatic people will be allowed to enter.

The SOP states that “all people should be advised to install and use the Aarogya Setu App”.

Prakash Javadekar said he hopes that people will "welcome" this move as the government is working to relax several restrictions imposed by the challenges of the epidemic.

“Customers can also buy food and drinks at the theater’s stalls, and then take them with them (in the auditorium). These are normal phenomena, but when the situation becomes abnormal due to COVID-19, we must set these restrictions. These restrictions Imminent.

SOP pointed out that the number of people in the elevator should be limited and efforts should be made to encourage spectators to avoid walking during the intermission.

"Long intermissions can be used to allow viewers sitting in different rows of the auditorium to move in a staggered manner. The start time, pause time, and end time of a program on any screen must not overlap with the start time.

The SOP must force employees to wear face masks and disinfect the cinema auditorium after each screening. This is part of the SOP. It also instructs the theater owner to arrange for the box office, food and beverage area, employee and employee lockers, toilets Regular cleaning and disinfection work, common areas and backstage.

According to the guidelines, if anyone visiting the cinema is found to be positive for COVID-19, the entire premises must be disinfected.

The Ministry of Health also requires movie theater owners to publish public service announcements about wearing masks, paying attention to physical distancing, and maintaining hand hygiene before the screening, during and at the end of the screening.

The SOP pointed out that any stigma or unruly behavior related to COVID-19 should be "strictly handled through coordination between the auditorium manager and the local government."

"Customers should be encouraged to use cinema apps/QR codes, etc. to order food as much as possible, and provide multiple sales counters in the dining area when possible."

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