In order to restore the state’s economic activity, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has allowed reopening of hotels in the national capital, with necessary precautions and social distancing.

The hotels have been closed for nearly five months due to the pandemic lockdown.

This decision was taken in a meeting held with the Delhi government, Lieutenant governor Anil Baijal’s office and the DDMA.

DDMA has also given nod to reopen weekly markets on a trial basis. However, gyms will continue to remain shut.

According to the Delhi government, it is vital to bring back the economy on track as hotels in the city contribute around 8 per cent of GDP, and provide employment, while the weekly market employs lakhs of people.

The apex body of the hotel industry in India, Hotel Association of India said, “Indian hospitality industry holds immense potential to be a global leader and we believe this move will slowly help the capital-intensive, people-centric sector to gradually inch towards revival.

“While the opening of hotels in Delhi will help in aiding the resurgence of the sector, there is a lot more support required to keep the survival, revival, and thrival of the industry in mind.

“Our vision is to provide all the necessary elements that will propel the sector towards heightened growth in the years to come. Extending support to the government, we have also proposed to bring in an inter-state task force to share the load in reviving the sector.”

Professionals in the hospitality sector have welcomed the move.

Dr. Jyotsna Suri, executive committee member, Hotel Association of India and chairperson and managing director, Bharat Hotels Limited said, “We welcome the move of the government for reopening of hotels in Delhi.

“This decision will enable the revival of the industry and help sustain the livelihood of many employees affected by the lockdown. We look forward to resuming operations as per new norms and with strict hygiene and sanitisation protocols.”