As residents of Gurgaon struggle to get access to basic necessities and several migrant workers are rendered homeless due to the lockdown, officials from the district administration Wednesday said adequate measures are being taken to provide for their needs.
While night shelters have been directed to open their doors to “urban homeless people, stranded labour and some other categories”, to meet the demand for food and groceries, officials are looking into coordination with supply chains and making arrangements for groceries to be delivered to people’s doorsteps.
In addition, Commissioner of Police Mohammad Akil Wednesday issued orders to senior officers in the district, alerting them about 12 “online delivery services” that are “allowed to operate” during the lockdown. “The following online delivery services Zomato, Flipkart, Amazon, Blue Dart, Wow Express, Swiggy, Grofers, BigBasket, MilkBasket, Dunzo, Big Bazaar, IFFCO Tokio Good shall be allowed to operate,” the order stated.
Since last week, shops in the district have seen an unprecedented rush as people hoard essential items, leading to empty shelves in several stores, while some others closed down unexpectedly this week.
Prices in several places were hiked, and for some residents, getting to stores to purchase items became a problem as public transport was withdrawn.
Those relying on home delivery services were left wanting as several services remained unavailable this week, with companies alleging police harassment of delivery personnel.
Commissioner of Gurgaon Ashok Sangwan held a meeting Wednesday to discuss these issues with various stakeholders, including the Chemist Association, Kairana Association, milk suppliers, and online sellers of these items, to ascertain how to streamline supply of “essential items” and medicines to people.
“Residents should not panic in this hour of crisis, there is no shortage of anything. Everyday essentials like food grains, pulses, spices and sugar are available in sufficient quantity, and there is also adequate supply of milk in the district. All these will be supplied to consumers smoothly and people will get essential goods near their homes,” said Sangwan.
In an effort towards this end, the Gurgaon district administration, on Wednesday evening, announced that 15 mobile grocery shops would become operational in the district in the coming days to provide essential items to people.“These mobile shops will allow people of upscale areas, high-rises, and condominiums to access essential items in their neighbourhoods. In the beginning, 15 such vehicles will provide goods, but the number may be increased or decreased as required in the future,” said Deputy Commissioner Amit Khatri.
The Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) on Wednesday also began seeking information from all Residents’ Welfare Association representatives about the need for essential food items.
In order to provide shelter to people stranded in Gurgaon with no work and little money, the Urban Local Bodies department, Haryana on Wednesday issued orders to all districts, directing them to house such people in their night shelters.
Meanwhile, Gurgaon did not record any new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, but a second case was recorded in Faridabad, with officials saying the patient is a 45- year- old who had given his sample for testing at a hospital in Delhi. “His sample returned positive today, and he has been admitted at an isolation ward at a private hospital,” said an official.
The patient who had tested positive last week in Faridabad, emerging as the first case of coronavirus in the district, tested negative Wednesday.
“Another sample will now be sent to the lab, and only if that too tests negative will she be considered to have recovered from the virus,” said Yashpal, Deputy Commissioner of Faridabad. Haryana has so far recorded 17 cases of coronavirus.
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