Smoking inside cafes and restaurants permitted

A man is photographed smoking. (Sun Photo/Fayaz Moosa)

The post-COVID-19 guideline for cafés and restaurants has been amended to permit smoking inside restaurants and cafés in the designated areas.

The guideline for the “New Normal” by HPA initially banned smoking in such locations. This includes shisha, vape, and e-cigarettes as well.

It was amended and reissued on June 27, which now permits smoking inside such locations. Arrangements to ensure that customers who wish to smoke are in an appropriate distance away from other customers is to be made by restaurants and cafés.

Health Emergency Operations Center (HEOC) spokesperson Dr. Nazla Rafeeq said that the decision came after consultation with different sectors.

Cafés and restaurants were reopened on July 1 under the new normal initiative for the Maldives. With the reopening, large numbers of people have been observed going to cafés and restaurants.