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PTI, Mumbai: Maharashtra government on Wednesday extended the lockdown in the state till August 31 in view of rising coronavirus cases. The state's Covid count has crossed the four-lakh mark.

The govt notification said the decision has been taken as an "emergency step to prevent and contain" the spread of Covid-19.

As part of the Mission Begin Again initiative, malls and market complexes without theatres, food courts and restaurants will be operational between 9 am and 7 pm from August 5.

The movement of persons for purpose of non-essential activities like shopping and outdoor exercises shall be restricted within neighbourhood area limits with mandatory precautions of wearing masks, social distancing and personal hygiene.

Unrestricted movement will be allowed only for attending place of work which are open and for medical reasons, it said.

Large public gatherings and congregations will continue to remain prohibited, and marriage-related gatherings will have only up to 50 guests, it said. The maximum number of persons allowed at funerals will be 20, it added.

Kitchens of food courts and restaurants will be allowed to operate in the malls where only home delivery will be permitted, it said.

Outdoornon-team sports like golf courses, outdoor firing range, outdoor gymnastics, tennis, outdoor badminton and malkhamb will be allowed with physical distancing and sanitation measures from August 5, the order said.

Swimming pools will not be allowed to operate.

Wearing of masks will be compulsory in (public) transport system, it said.

Barber shops, spa, salons, and beauty parlors have been allowed to operate with certain stipulations since June 25.

With 9,211 new patients being detected, the number of Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra on Wednesday reached 4,00,651.

The state's death toll due to the pandemic went up to 14,463 with 298 patients dying, 60 of them in Mumbai, during the day, said health minister Rajesh Tope.

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