Tribune News Service
Amritsar, March 6
Though no positive case of coronavirus has been reported in the border district, masks are already out of stock. Undoubtedly, their rates have skyrocketed and people are ready to pay even Rs 500 for a piece, which normally costs about Rs 140. Similar is the case with alcohol-mixed sanitiser. The rate of a 500 ml bottle of sanitiser, which was earlier costing Rs 90, has risen to Rs 200.
SS Khanna, a trader dealing in surgical articles, said demand for air purifier masks and sanitisers increased manifold in the past two days in the market, leading to exhaustion of stocks. He said fresh orders were placed in the market but manufacturing units expressed their helplessness in meeting the orders. He said they were already busy in meeting the orders from foreign countries.
He said people resorted to panic sale which was harming the equilibrium of industry. He wondered those who rarely washed their hands with soap before having meals were buying sanitisers.
There is availability of locally produced sanitisers in the city. Surinder Duggal, president, Amritsar Chemists’ Association, said, “The association had already released a circular to all members not to sale these items beyond the print rate and those ignoring the circular would be penalised by striking off their membership.”
He said they were receiving orders from even outside. For instance, he said, he received a call from Srinagar to provide 10 lakh pieces of face masks, for which he expressed helplessness.
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