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Wednesday, May 27, 2020

In new order, Mumbai allows sale of only essentials; liquor discontinued

In some places, when the stores opened, the police had to be called to prevent crowding, and enforce physical distancing with what officers described as “mild lathicharge”.

| Mumbai | Updated: May 5, 2020 11:27:07 pm
In new order, Mumbai allows only sale of essentials; liquor discontinued People line up without maintaining physical distance to buy liquor in Mumbai, on Monday, May 4, 2020. (AP Photo: Rajanish Kakade)

With the eased lockdown in Mumbai leading to huge crowds and compromised social distancing, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner Praveen Pardeshi issued an order Tuesday, withdrawing relaxations for Mumbai and disallowing sale of liquor in the city. The order allowed only shops selling essential goods to operate.

“… It has been observed that the number of positive cases in the city of Mumbai have been rising and the downward trend is yet to set in and gathering of crowds in large numbers without following social distancing will be detrimental to the control of spread of virus and the advantage of the lockdown will be lost due to gathering of people in large numbers,” the order said.

In the last two days, shops in many places across Mumbai opened only by late afternoon, by which time, people had formed long queues and thrown all caution on social distancing to the winds. In some places, when the stores opened, the police had to be called in to prevent crowding, and enforce physical distancing with what officers described as “mild lathicharge”.

The state had on Sunday allowed the reopening of a maximum of five shops selling “non-essential” items on any road or street, including alcohol, books/stationery, electricals and mobile phones.

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