A woman walks past a painting outside an art school in Mumbai, India. (Image: Reuters/Francis Mascarenhas)
The New Year's Eve celebrations – just like Christmas and Diwali nights this year – will take place amid tight restrictions in view of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Major cities have been placed under night curfew to discourage large gatherings in public places.
This also comes at a time when there are growing concerns around the newly-detected fast-spreading strain of the novel coronavirus, which causes COVID-19.
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Here are the rules you need to follow while ushering in 2021:
Night curfew (11.00 pm to 6.00 am) will be in place till January 5, 2021.
Children below the age of 10 and citizens older than 60 years of age must avoid venturing out of the home on New Year's Eve, the state government has appealed.
No permission will be granted to hold religious or cultural rallies/programmes.
To keep vigil on the law and order in the ‘Maximum City’, about 35,000 Mumbai Police will be deployed.
Restaurants, pubs and other recreational establishments will have to down their shutters by 11.00 pm due to night curfew restrictions. Strict action will be taken against establishments that fail to do so on December 31.
Mumbaikars will be allowed to visit their favourite spots such as the Gateway of India, Marine Drive, Girgaum Chowpatty, Juhu, Gorai and Madh Island area. But they will have to follow physical distancing, wear face masks and abide by other safety protocols. No more than four persons will be allowed to assemble as a group.
Parties on boats, in banquet halls, etc. will not be permitted on December 31.
"All business activities and night shifts will be allowed, except the establishments used for entertainment and recreational activities (pubs, restaurants, theatres, etc). These must close at 11 pm," Joint Commissioner of Mumbai Police, Vishwas Nangre Patil, said in a statement.
Also read | New Year’s Eve celebration in Mumbai: What is allowed and what not
Delhi and Noida
A night curfew has been imposed in Delhi ahead of New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Police have warned that no function without proper permission will be considered legal and organisers will face a penalty.
No exit will be allowed from the Rajiv Chowk Metro Station after 9.00 pm on December 31, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) said. Entry of passengers there will be allowed till the departure of the last train.
In Noida, the district administration and police department have said that no more than 100 persons will be allowed at a venue for New Year’s Eve parties.
Owners of hotels, restaurants and clubs organising parties and events in Gautam Budh Nagar on December 31 will have to obtain permissions from the district magistrate or commissioner of police and inform about the number of guests they are expecting.
Also read | No New Year's Eve celebrations in Delhi: Night curfew imposed amid new COVID-19 strain scare
The police in Bengaluru have issued new guidelines to enforce preventive and precautionary measures in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Bengaluru Police on December 30 revised the timings of Section 144 (prohibitory orders). Gatherings will be banned in the city from 12.00 pm on December 31 till 6.00 am on January 1. The previous prohibitory order was from 6.00 pm on December 31 till 6.00 am on January 1.
Assembly of more than four people in public spaces or open areas has been restricted. No public events will be allowed.
No DJs, parties, events, shows, programmes, musical nights, performances, etc. will be allowed. However, hotels, malls, restaurants, clubs, etc. may carry on with their regular activities.
Individuals with advance bookings and e-tokens will be allowed at hotels and restaurants.
Also read | Night curfew in Karnataka: New Year's Eve gatherings prohibited in Bengaluru, Mangaluru
The police in Hyderabad also issued rules that must be followed on December 31.
The Outer Ring Road (ORR) will be closed from 10.00 pm on December 31 to 5.00 am of January 1, except for passengers bound to and from the airport.
According to a report by The News Minute, resorts that are located along Chennai's East Coast Road (ECR) and Old Mahabalipuram Road (OMR) – the two main highways in Chennai connecting several neighbourhoods, will not be allowed to organise New Year's Eve parties. Guests staying at resorts along ECR and OMR will be allowed to take these routes only until 10.00 pm on December 31, provided they provide a valid ID proof.
No parties will be allowed on beaches, farmhouses and hotels/clubs.
Standard COVID-19 control measures will remain be in place. The city is expecting some public functions on New Year's Eve, including some themed on the ongoing anti-agricultural reform laws protest in Delhi.
Meanwhile, Goa's Health Minister Vishwajit Rane said on December 31 that the state government is likely to impose night curfew in the coastal state to prevent the spread of COVID-19. However, Rane did not specify when this would be implemented.Also read: Night curfew likely in Goa, says minister