Saji Cherian, Minister for Culture, Kerala State Film Development Corporation, Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, said on Tuesday that the decision on reopening of theatres and auditoriums in Kerala will be taken in the next phase of discussion.
Addressing the media in Thiruvananthapuram, the minister said, “The test positivity rate (TPR) is reducing now and it is a relief for the state. We will take a final call on reopening of theatres and auditoriums as soon as possible after considering all the necessary things.”
Kerala is one of the states in the country that has been seeing a constant rise in Covid-19 cases and as a result, theatres have been shut down in the state for over six months. Even as a few industries have resumed functioning as part of the relaxation of Covid protocols, theatres continue to remain shut.
Earlier in August, Minister Cherian had said that the decision to reopen theatres would be based on the TPR in the state. “If the TPR falls below 8, then we can consider reopening. However, it’s currently on an increasing trend. We should also look at the number of positive cases reported in the areas where the theatres are located before making the decision,” he had added.
On the other hand, the film exhibitors recently expressed hope that theatres would reopen by the end of September with Covid-19 cases starting to show a decreasing trend.
However, on Saturday, during the state’s Covid-19 review meeting, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan denied permission to reopen theatres, bars and dine-in restaurants, while deciding to reopen schools from November 1, according to a Mathrubhumi report.
Meanwhile, Kerala Health Minister Veena George said on Monday that over 90% of the state’s population has been inoculated with the first dose vaccination. Over 2.3 crore people have received their first dose of vaccine and nearly 1 crore have been fully vaccinated in Kerala.
On Monday, Kerala recorded 15,692 fresh cases, taking the total number of active Covid-19 cases in the state to 1,67,049. The TPR stands at 17.49%.