India vs New Zealand: Maharashtra govt allows only 25% capacity at Wankhede Stadium for second Test

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India vs New Zealand: Maharashtra govt allows only 25% capacity at Wankhede Stadium for second Test
© Provided by The Times of India

MUMBAI: The Maharashtra government on Saturday issued an order allowing for only 25% crowd capacity at the Wankhede Stadium for the second Test between India and New Zealand, which is scheduled to be held from December 3 to 7.

Considering that the iconic stadium’s capacity is around 33,000, it is now expected to accommodate not more than 8,500 spectators. The news is a major dampener to the cricket-starved fans of the city, which is hosting a Test match after five years.

However, while the covid numbers have gone down drastically in the city and the state, the authorities are clearly being cautious after the emergence of the dangerous variant of the virus in South Africa, which may have travelled to Mumbai as well.

On Saturday, the department of Revenue and Forest, Disaster Management, Relief and Rehabilitation of the Maharashtra government issued an order which said that in case of ‘restriction on attendance in any program, event etc “In the case of open to sky spaces, for any events or gatherings, people upto 25% of space capacity will be allowed. Concerned DDMA shall have authority to decide the capacity in case of such locations of gatherings or events, if not declared formally (like stadiums).”

As per the order, all those present at the venue-players, officials and the spectators will have to be fully vaccinated as well. The spectators need to wear masks at all times and also need to maintain social distancing, and spitting in public places.

Earlier this month, the Mumbai Cricket Association had approached the state government asking for clarity on crowd capacity which will be allowed during the match. Post this order, the MCA can now begin its sale of tickets-though it remains how many tickets it can actually sell, and how many it can allot to its 330-odd members.

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