Wednesday September 22, 2021

Shopkeepers flout government orders

August 01, 2020

Rawalpindi:The traders and shopkeepers used fraud tactics to flout the orders of the lockdown announced by the provincial government on the eve of Eidul Azha.

The Punjab government has directed all traders to shut their businesses and shops for a specific period of time to combat coronavirus pandemic. The survey carried out in various markets of Rawalpindi revealed that the shopkeepers closed their shops but they tactically placed their products on the pavements in front of their shops where huge gatherings of visitors were seen throughout the day.

Zahid Hussain, a shopkeeper, said: “We have closed our shops in line with the directives of the provincial government. Now we are doing business on the pavements to meet the requirements of the people.”

The government announced lockdown in markets and bazaars with an aim to thwart chances of large gatherings of the people before Eid-ul-Azha. But the rush was seen everywhere as the shopkeepers were selling products on the pavements.

Nazia Wahab, a visitor at Commercial Market in B-Block (Satellite Town), said: “The shopkeeper asked us what we wanted to buy after which he entered his shop and brought different varieties of kids’ garments.”

“Every shopkeeper is standing in front of his shop and receiving customers. So we face no problem to do our Eid shopping despite a lockdown in the markets,” she said. It is pertinent to mention here that violation of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) before Eidul Fitr this year caused the spread of coronavirus across the country. This time the government announced a complete lockdown to avoid that kind of situation that had increased burden on the hospitals due to an increasing number of coronavirus patients.

Awais Kiyani, a shopkeeper, said “We have been facing a financial crisis after start of the coronavirus pandemic. We have to bear our expenditures so if we don’t do business on Eid then how can our families survive in the face of an increasing price hike.”