May 30, 2021 6:54:21 pm
Shopping Centres Association of India (SCAI) has urged the Chandigarh Administration to allow malls to restart operations as per regular operational hours in a controlled and safe manner.
Shopping Centres Association of India — the apex body of shopping centres / malls — represents 650+ large malls and more than 1000 malls under 100,000 sq ft in India.
In a representation sent to VP Singh Badnore, Administrator of Union Territory of Chandigarh, the industry body highlighted that the pandemic has forced the Union Territory to take extreme measures — like lockdowns — that has in turn adversely impacted businesses and livelihoods of thousands of workers in the city.
SCAI also addressed the concern that almost 80% employees working in malls, shops, restaurants and in the service sectors are from economically weaker sections and get directly impacted with such disruptions in businesses. The association also pointed out that, despite being a safe space that followed all protocols, shopping malls/centres were allowed to start operations at a very late stage during the gradual unlocking of the nation earlier, which resulted in massive loss of revenue to the sector as well as government.
In its representation to the Chandigarh Administration, the association also stated that operation of shopping malls is unlike opening of unorganized retail shops and requires meticulous planning and a lot of preparations. The industry body said that the SoPs created and submitted by the SCAI to the authorities emphasizes on hygiene and safety of consumers and the strict adherence of guidelines shows the dedication of the industry to ensure a safe shopping experience for consumers. Shopping Malls are probably the only safe space which is better equipped to monitor and control crowd entering the space.
SCAI also shared that its members have been following all rules laid out by CPWD and ISHRAE for central air conditioning in compliance with the guidelines issued by the authorities to ensure the safety of visitors. The association also highlighted the measures followed since removal of lockdown last year, which included humidity and temperature control as per set norms, superior MERV 13 filter installations, fresh air circulation as per set norms.
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