Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: The Maharashtra government on Sunday relaxed the COVID-19 curbs that were imposed a day earlier, allowing beauty salons and gyms to operate at 50 per cent capacity. However, the state government said that only people fully vaccinated against the deadly pathogen would be allowed to use enter gyms and salons.

On Saturday night, the state government had imposed strict curbs across Maharashtra, ordering the closure of all swimming pools, spas, wellness centres, schools and colleges amid a massive surge in COVID-19 cases.

A night curfew from 11 pm to 5 am was also imposed and government offices were directed to opt for work from home and working hours should be staggered if work from office is required.

Gatherings at marriages and social, religious, cultural or political gatherings was also capped at 50. In funerals and last rites, only 20 people can be present, the fresh guidelines said.

After imposing the fresh restrictions, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said his government wanted to prevent health services from coming under excessive pressure as he refused to impose a complete lockdown in the state.

Thackeray said he had directed the authorities to take strict action against those who violate Covid appropriate behaviour (CAB) norms. He appealed to people not to become "corona messengers" and endanger lives of others.

"We have been fighting the virus for the last two years and have successfully dealt with two waves of the pandemic by taking cautious steps. The virus, in a different avatar, has been spreading rapidly," Thackeray was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

"Instead of discussing whether it is mild or serious, we need to take steps to stop it, else our health infrastructure will be under tremendous pressure," he said.

"We don't want to harm livelihood but want to prevent crowding. When restrictions were eased last year, some people continued to follow health protocols but others were complacent and irresponsible. This will not be tolerated," he further said.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma