The Maharashtra government on Monday decided to extend the time till which restaurants and shops can stay open and announced to reopen amusement parks across the state. The restrictions were in place to check the spread of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in the state.

At present, restaurants are allowed to operate between 7am and 10pm with 50% of their seating capacity.

The decision followed a meeting between Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and the Covid-19 task force earlier in the day.

A statement from the chief minister’s office said the state government decided to reopen amusement parks across the state from October 22. However, water rides in amusement parks will remain suspended, for now.

The issue of vaccination of children against Covid-19 was also discussed in the meeting, during which Uddhav Thackeray instructed the state health department to be in touch with the Centre to keep the stock of the vaccination for children ready, officials in the chief minister’s office familiar with the development said.

A delegation of members of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India, the umbrella body of premium restaurants and star-rated hotels, urged the Maharashtra government to revert the time, till which restaurants and bars can stay open, to their original deadline of 1.30am, citing economic loss. The delegates assured the government of vaccinating the staff at such eateries.

The Maharashtra chief minister also asked the management of theatres and movie halls, which are scheduled to reopen from October 22, too, to conduct fire and structural safety checks before welcoming patrons, according to Hindustan Times’ sister publication LiveMint.

Last month Uddhav Thackeray permitted the movie halls and theatres in the state to reopen from October 22 provided that they follow protocols necessitated to prevent the spread of Covid-19.