West Bengal eases COVID-19 lockdown curbs, allows restaurants to open for 3 hours


New Delhi: The West Bengal government on Thursday (June 3, 2021) revised the lockdown guidelines after reviewing the COVID-19 situation in the state. 

The government allowed the restaurants in the state to operate for three hours in the evening only if the employees at these eateries and bars get vaccinated first. 

“COVID-19 contagion is declining in West Bengal following the imposition of restrictions. Restaurants can be open for three hours in the evening from 5 pm to 8 pm provided the people working there are vaccinated,” Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said.

Further, the state authorities have plans to allow shopping malls to operate at 25 percent capacity and retail shops to open for an additional one hour from June 15. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee disclosed these pointers in a meeting with representatives of various chambers of commerce at the state secretariat.

However, CM Banerjee added that her government is not in favour of shutting down business in the pandemic, however as the state is trying to control the disease such restrictions need to be in place. 

The Chief Minister said that her government was mulling the option of vaccinating domestic help in the same way it has planned to inoculate hawkers, bus conductors, vendors and others who are considered as “super spreaders”.

“We have been vaccinating 60-70 thousand people every day. The government cannot single-handedly vaccinate everyone. I will urge you to come forward and help us to inoculate people,” the chief minister said.

“1.4 crore of people in West Bengal have been inoculated so far,” Banerjee said.

“As trains are not operating now, you can inform workers at least 72 hours before. Discuss the matter with the health department and try to source vaccines from wherever possible because we are not getting enough vaccines,” Banerjee added.

The state government also revealed that the central government has provided the state with only 17 lakh vaccines while the government had sought three crore doses.

Meanwhile, West Bengal on Thursday reported over 8,811 new cases of COVID-19 infection, taking the tally to 14,03,535. The state health department also revealed in a bulletin that the state recorded 108 deaths due to COVID-19 and the death toll rose to 15,921.

(With Agency inputs)

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