India News

Central Govt Allows Full Seating Capacity at All Cinema Halls

Seating capacity at cinema halls across the country has been increased to 100%, according to the latest  guidelines issued by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Saturday.

The notice followed the ministry’s order on January 27 and set down guidelines for surveillance of public places in the containment zones across the country.

The guidelines include ensuring physical distancing of at least six feet outside the auditoriums, availability of sanitisers in “preferably in a touch-free” mode, using face masks and following respiratory etiquettes such as “covering one’s mouth and nose while coughing/sneezing with a tissue/handkerchief/flexed elbow and disposing off used tissues properly”.


Entry and exit points should have thermal screenings to prevent asymptomatic individuals from entering, according to the guidelines. It must also dedicate “sufficient time interval between successive screenings on a single screen as well as on various screens in a multiplex should be provided to ensure row-wise staggered entry and exit of the audience”.

To avoid overcrowding, cinema halls have been advised to allow longer intermissions to enable audience to move in a staggered manner, and ensure that the timings of intermission do not overlap in the multiplexes.

Digital no-contact booking and payment methods “for tickets, food, and beverages, etc. by using online bookings, use of e-wallets, QR code scanners, etc” have been suggested. The number of food stalls can also be multiplied with foot markers to prevent overcrowding, the Ministry’s guidelines suggested.


According to the order, staff at theatres be trained in precautions “related to COVID-19, respiratory hygiene, hand hygiene, etc”. They must also ensure that they monitor their own health as well.

Lastly, in terms of air-conditioning and ventilation, the temperature should range from 24 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius and cross-ventilation should be encouraged. Re-circulation of air should be avoided as much as possible.

While these guidelines will be made effective from February 1, states like Tamil Nadu and West Bengal had already began functioning at full capacity since mid-January.