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Monday, 01 June, 2020, 10 : 52 AM [IST]

Maharashtra, Sikkim prohibit opening of hotels and restaurants

States such as Maharashtra and Sikkim prohibited hotels and restaurants from resuming through new orders on Sunday while Gujarat and Karnataka permitted hotels and restaurants to open as per new standard operating procedures (SOPs) in a phased manner from June 8.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) guidelines on Saturday permitted hotels and restaurants to resume operations outside the containment zones from June 8. But, the guidelines also mentioned that the states, based on their assessment, may prohibit certain activities outside the containment zones or impose restrictions as deemed necessary. As per the MHA guidelines, hospitality providers can resume operations outside the containment zones with SOPs prescribed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

The Maharashtra government's order on easing of restrictions and phase wise opening of lockdown comes into effect from June 1 and shall remain effective till June 30. The Sikkim government has prohibited hotels and restaurants from reopening from June 1 till further instructions.

Dilip Datwani, president of Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) said states and union territories such as Goa and Daman and Diu had expressed their willingness to proceed with the opening up of hotels and restaurants in a phased manner in the western region.
West Bengal has given the go ahead to hotels and restaurants to reopen from June 8, though further details were awaited by hotels and restaurants in the state.

“We are waiting for more details. But if interstate restrictions and transport restrictions are not eased by states, I doubt if we will get any guests,” said Neeraj Jain, a member of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Eastern India.

Dipak Haksar, Chairman of CII's National Committee on Tourism and Hospitality said the guidelines issued by MHA will act as a catalyst in kick starting the tourism and hospitality sector and he is hopeful that states will follow soon.

“We hope majority of the states will align with the MHA guidelines. It is possible that states which have a larger number of containment zones might take a different view. Interstate connectivity is also critical for tourism to commence,” said Aashish Gupta, consulting CEO of industry body Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality (FAITH).

Others like Delhi are expected to take a call on the matter soon. "We have implemented the SOPs at our end. Flights are operational and we have been getting requests for rooms and those demands will only go up. States should consider this," said Ankur Bhatia, Executive Director, Bird Group which owns and operates Roseate House in Delhi’s Aero City. (Source: Economic Times)

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