The Delhi government Saturday said it will implement the Centre’s latest guidelines on opening of neighborhood and standalone shops including those selling mobile phones, garments and stationary items.
Sources in the Delhi government, however, said shops in coronavirus containment zones will remain shut and no activity will be allowed in such areas.
Standalone shops and those in residential areas will open with social-distancing norms strictly followed, they said.
However, shops located in market places and malls will continue to remain shut till May 3 in the national capital, as mentioned in the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the sources said.
On Saturday, the number of containment zones rose to 95 in the national capital.
Asked if allowing additional shops to open was a prudent decision given that the coronavirus cases in the national capital crossed 2500- mark and more areas got added to the containment zones, sources said the Delhi government had to take this decision as people had started opening their establishments in several areas anyway after they heard about the latest MHA guidelines.
Asking them to down shutters resulted in a law and order situation in some areas, they said. “The Delhi government did not have any option, but to implement the MHA’s guidelines.
“However, no activity will be allowed in containment zones, a source said.
According to the MHA’s guidelines issued late Friday, the shops will be functioning with 50 per cent workforce and adhere strictly to precautions which include social distancing and wearing of masks.
In rural areas, all shops, except those in single and multi-brand shopping malls, are allowed to open.
The Union Home Ministry also said malls, liquor and cigarette shops, sale of non-essential items through e-commerce platforms continue to remain shut.
Restaurants, hair salons and barber shops will not be allowed to open as these render services and do not fall under the shop category.
On Friday, the total number of coronavirus cases in the national capital rose to 2,514, with 138 new cases and three fresh deaths being reported in a day.
On Thursday night, the number of cases of in the city stood at 2,376 and 50 deaths.
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