Thiruvananthapuram: With proper adherence to Covid-appropriate behaviour, the Pinarayi Vijayan-led Kerala government has allowed shops in malls to open from August 11 onwards. Issuing a notification, the Disaster Management department of the state asked authorities to deploy persons at all entry points of malls to ensure COVID-19 protocols, like wearing of masks, use of hand sanitisers, temperature checks and social distancing, and other conditions are strictly followed before people enter the shops.Also Read - Kerala Lockdown Update: Theatres, Auditoriums Likely to Reopen Soon | Read Details

“Special teams shall be deployed by the District Collectors to monitor the effective functioning of the Rapid Response Teams (RRTS) and to ensure that RRTs strengthen surveillance and contact tracing significantly,” the order, issued by Chief Secretary V P Joy, said. Also Read - Kerala Lockdown: State Imposes Stringent Lockdown In Urban, Panchayat Wards | Check Guidelines Here 

The latest circular is in addition to the one issued on August 4 permitting the opening of shops, markets, banks, offices, financial institutions, factories, industrial establishments, open tourist spaces and other establishments six days a week from Monday to Saturday. According to the August 4 order, schools, colleges, cinema halls, in-house dining in hotels and restaurants were to remain closed and malls were permitted to open only for online delivery and educational institutions were allowed to impart online education only. Also Read - Kerala Lockdown Update: Kerala to Reopen Schools From November 1. Details Here

It had also asked all shops, tourism centres and other establishments to display the status of vaccination of employees and the number of customers permitted at a time.

Meanwhile, in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases, the Chief Minister has urged people to perform Karkidaka Vavu Bali (an annual Hindu ritual, where devotees perform balitarpan to pay obeisance to their ancestors), at their homes.

Kerala reported 20,367 new COVID-19 cases and 139 deaths on Saturday. With this, the active caseload in the state stands at 1,78,166, while the death toll is 17,654.