Spurt in COVID cases: Admin ‘enforces’ 50 % opening of shops in Srinagar

Traders oppose cut in business Ops, say “decision without consent surprising”

A wicker weaver weaving a basket at his shop in Srinagar on Thursday, Kashmiri Wicker products now available online. UNI

Srinagar: In a bid to combat the deadly pandemic, the district administration Srinagar on Wednesday enforced 50 per cent opening of shops in the markets and other places across the district. However, the traders objected to the move, saying that the government should rather go for a shutdown on a rotational basis and that too after taking them on board.
Pertinently, Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir has recorded sharp increase in the number of daily COVID-19 positive cases from past over two weeks, thus forcing the administration to take a series of measures to contain the virus from spreading.
In one such measure, the administration today enforced 50 per cent opening of shops with officials stating that the shops and business establishments will remain open on a rotational basis.
“Markets having shops on both sides of the road will remain open on a rotation basis on a particular day while markets having shops on one side of the road will remain open on an odd-even basis,” Deputy Commissioner (DC) Srinagar had said in an order yesterday. Besides, the public transport shall as per the order be permitted to ply only at 50 per cent of authorized seating capacity.
However, the traders’ community expressed resentment against the order, saying that the decision will not help contain virus. They also complaint that they have not been taken on board before announcing the new decision.
Owner of a grocery store at Sarai Bala said “we can’t follow the opening of markets on rotation. Instead we can open shops on alternate days.”
Owner of a computer sales outlet at Poloview said “ There is no benefit of this kind of rotational lockdown. Administration should impose area wise lockdown like one day for uptown and one day for downtown areas as that is a better option “.
President Traders Federation Kashmir Muhammad Yaseen Khan said: “ It is a surprising decision taken by authorities as nobody from association was taken on board. Administration should talk to traders first before imposing any Restrictions on traders.”

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COVID-19

India
Confirmed: 21,077,410Deaths: 230,168