Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: In what could be considered as a Valentine's Week gift for Mumbaikars, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has allowed eateries, restaurants and bars to remain open in the financial capital of the country till 1 am.

The BMC, which had imposed a night curfew in December last year, had issued an order, saying restaurants and bars in Mumbai can operate till 11.30 pm. However, the order was withdrawn on Saturday after restaurant and bar owners expressed their dissatisfaction and appealed the BMC to repeal its order.

"Based on information received from its restaurant members, the HRAWI sought clarification from the BMC and requested for withdrawing the notification with immediate effect," Hindustan Times quoted Hotel and Restaurant Association Western India (HRAWI) as saying.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, meanwhile, had announced his decision to lift coronavirus-induced restrictions in the state in a phase-wise manner. However, several restrictions were reimposed after the state reported a rise in COVID-19 cases.

In January, Thackeray had also extended the COVID-19 restrictions in the state till February 28 "to prevent and contain the spread of the virus". However, several activities were permitted as a part of Maha Vikas Aghadi government's "Mission Begin Again".

"The guidelines issued vide orders dated 30th September 2020 and 14th October 2020 (extended by order dated 29th October 2020, 27th November 2020 and 29th December 2020) to operationalise MISSION BEGIN AGAIN for easing of restrictions and phase-wise opening, will remain in force till 28th February 2021 for containment of COVID-19 epidemic in the state," Maharashtra government's order read.

So far, the novel coronavirus, which was first reported in India in January last year, has affected 20.41 lakh in Maharashtra and claimed over 51,000 lives. According to the state health department, recovery rate in Maharashtra stands at 95.72 per cent while the fatality rate is 2.51 per cent. The active number of cases, on the other hand, is at 34,934.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma