- Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced some relaxations in Covid curbs
- People can take passes either from app or from offices: Mr Thackeray
- Uddhav Thackeray has urged people to get fully vaccinated and travel
Mumbai's arterial suburban train network will be open from August 15 to fully vaccinated people 14 days after their second jab, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced on Sunday, easing more COVID-19 curbs but imploring people not to let their guard down.
"We are providing some relaxations now but if cases go up, we will have to resort to lockdown again. So I appeal to you to not invite another wave of Covid," Mr Thackeray said in a televised address to the state.
"Local trains in Mumbai will start from August 15 for those who have been vaccinated with both the shots. We will launch an app where people can update if they have taken both doses and when they took their second dose. People can take passes either from the app or from the offices," he said.
"Passengers who do not have a smartphone can take photo passes from municipal ward offices in the city as well as suburban railway stations. These passes are for local travel which will have QR codes so that the railway administration can verify their authenticity. I urge you not to allow anyone to obtain passes illegally. Get fully vaccinated and travel," he added.
"After a meeting of the Covid task force tomorrow, we will announce relaxations about malls, restaurants, and more," the Chief Minister said.
The vast local train service is currently open to only essential service workers. Regular operations were shut down in April this year during the devastating second wave of COVID-19.
Mr Thackeray urged people to follow coronavirus safety rules. "We all know that we have not yet fully recovered from the second wave. There is also the risk of a potential third wave. The central government has also repeatedly warned you about this," he said.
Maharashtra reported 5,508 new COVID-19 cases - 553 fewer than yesterday - and 151 deaths in the last 24 hours.