Sri Lanka has lifted a ban on wedding receptions as part of an easing of coronavirus restrictions, but grooms may not kiss the bride – at least not in public.
Wealthy Sri Lankans usually hold wedding celebrations with thousands of guests, and the festivities often last for days with much eating, drinking, dancing and singing.
Under the new guidelines there should be no more than 100 guests, all of whom must stay a metre apart and wear masks, including the happy couple.
“Guests should not be allowed to kiss, hug or shake hands,” the latest health ministry rules say. “Greeting each other should be done without any touching.”
Sri Lanka imposed a nationwide curfew on 20 March that ruled out gatherings of any sort, but the restrictions have been eased in many districts that are not considered high-risk.
Religious gatherings remain banned, and only the bereaved family are allowed at funerals.
The capital, Colombo, and the neighbouring district of Gampaha, where the main international airport is located, are still under a 24-hour curfew that entered its third month on Wednesday.
Offices have been allowed to open with reduced staff to provide essential services.
Sri Lanka has reported 1,055 coronavirus infections with nine deaths since the first case in the country was identified on 27 January.