Expect some relief in curfew

Chandigarh Admn may allow non-essential shops to open on odd-even basis

Expect some relief in curfew

Shops closed at the Sector 22 market in Chandigarh on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Manoj Mahajan

Dushyant Singh Pundir

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 15

After nearly a fortnight, residents of the city are likely to get some relaxation in corona curfew from the next week.

With a steady decline in the number of Covid-19 cases in the city, the UT Administration is mulling over providing some conditional relief so that the residents could meet their requirements.

Eight deaths, 660 new cases in UT

Chandigarh: The city reported eight deaths and 660 new cases of Covid-19 on Saturday. The active cases now stand at 7,847 and the toll 625. As many as 963 patients recovered from the disease during the past 24 hours. TNS

An official said the Administration could allow the opening of shops dealing in non-essential commodities on an odd-even basis or could allow all shops to open for three or four days. However, the night curfew and weekend lockdown were likely to continue further, he added.

Suffering losses, traders had requested the UT Administration to reconsider its decision of imposing corona curfew for a longer period in the city. They had stated that they were yet to recover from losses they suffered during the previous lockdown, and now the UT Administration had imposed a partial lockdown in the city.

Charanjiv Singh, president, Chandigarh Beopar Mandal, had requested the Administration to allow non-essential shops to open on the pattern of the neighbouring state of Punjab. He said there was no reason to close all shops when banks, government and private offices and industries were opened and people were allowed to move freely.

He said the Administration should allow all shops to open at least on an odd-even basis as traders have a liability to pay rent, salaries, bank interest and water and electricity bills.

Meanwhile, Kamaljit Singh Panchhi, president, Chandigarh Traders Association, Sector 17, said to break the chain of coronavirus transmission, the Administration should either impose a complete lockdown for a certain period of time or allow shops to open with strict restrictions. He said a partial lockdown would not serve any purpose, since all other activities were allowed except opening of shops selling non-essential items.

He said the imposition of curfew for a longer period of time would adversely affect not only the business community but every section of society and the daily wage earners the most. If the Administration was planning to extend the partial lockdown, then the traders must be given financial assistance, he demanded.

On providing some relief in corona curfew, UT Adviser Manoj Parida said a final decision in this regard would be taken by UT Administrator VP Singh Badnore at a meeting on Monday.

As a total lockdown for a long period would adversely affect the economy and may also lead to migration of labourers from the city, the UT Administration had decided to impose daytime restrictions from 5 am on May 4, which would continue till 5 am on May 18, and night curfew from 6 pm to 5 am on all days.

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