Rumours trigger panic buying of essential items in Amritsar

Rumours trigger panic buying of essential items in Amritsar

Neeraj Bagga

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 30

Fearing imposition of the lockdown following continuous surge in the Covid-19 cases, residents have resorted to panic buying of essentials, including grocery and medicines.

Confirming the trend, Kuldeep Rai Gupta, former chief of the Amritsar Retail Karyana Association, said, “Sale of cereals, pulses, spices, edible oils and other grocery items more than doubled from normal days today.”

He said rumours related to extension of the weekend lockdown were such that locals bought in huge quantity of essentials.

People rushed to grocery stores and grain market to hoard food items and other daily-used material. Sabzi mandi also witnessed increased turnout of people who were seen buying vegetables in bulk.

Serpentine queues of people outside consumer stores, including DMart, Metro, Best Price and Big Bazaar amog others were visible. In the walled city, people were flocking grocery stores.

Dimple, who is a teacher and a mother of two kids, said “People are expecting the lockdown since positive cases are daily hovering around 500 and death toll is also high in the district.”

Bikram Singh, a chemist, said there was a spurt in sale of medicines as people already on medication preferred to stock medicines for a month, expecting imposition of the lockdown.

Additional Deputy Commissioner Himanshu Aggarwal said, “The district administration appeals to the public not to panic as essential services, including chemist, grocery and vegetable shops, LPG and petrol pumps will continue to work as usual. In any case, their functioning will not be affected.” He said each citizen should practise social distancing at public places and markets. “The administration has warned rumour-mongers not to spread disinformation on social media. Cases will be registered against such persons,” he said.

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