By Arun Pratap Singh
Dehradun, 7 Jun: The state government today allowed the opening of shops selling other goods, too, during the Covid Curfew, which has been extended till the morning of 15 June. It may be recalled that shopkeepers across the state were angry with the continued restrictions and had even threatened an agitation after yesterday’s orders issued by Chief Secretary Om Prakash extending the Covid Curfew till 15 June. Though the government this morning indicated a rethink on the strict restrictions by the evening, today, it has not yielded much to the pressure created by the traders in the state. Only a certain category of shops too has been added to the list of those that may open in a partial modification of yesterday’s order.
As per the order issued this evening by Chief Secretary Om Prakash, the government has allowed opening of shops selling utensils & crockery, hosiery, electronic goods, electrical goods, electronic parts, computer hardware and software, web designing, hardware and paints, sanitary ware, construction stone and marble, carpentry items and furniture on 8 June and 11 June from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. In all likelihood, however, the traders are not going to be appeased by the modified orders as very little has been yielded. Already the indications available are that the traders are unhappy with the fresh relaxations terming them very inadequate.
In addition, according to the revised orders issued today, all categories of goods carrier vehicles will be allowed to load or unload material. The government has also permitted loading and unloading of goods in the warehouses of wholesalers as well as retail shops round the clock every day. Earlier, the loading and unloading was being permitted only between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. only.
While the traders in the state still remain unhappy, Cabinet Minister and Government Spokesperson Subodh Uniyal said that it was necessary to take strict steps in the state in view of the infection, because the first priority of the government is to protect the lives of common people.
It may be revealed that according to the SOPs issued yesterday, grocery stores and general stores had been allowed to open on 9 and 14 June between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. PDS shops are allowed to open every day however till 12 noon. The liquor shops too have been allowed to open on 9 June, 11 June and 14 June between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. Ironically while the general stores and grocery stores are allowed to open only two days during the extension period on 9 and 14 June, respectively, the liquor vends have been allowed to open on three days during the extension, angering the traders across the state. Stationery and book stores have been permitted to open on 9 and 14 June till 1 p.m. Automobile repair shops are allowed to open every day till 12 noon, while automobile accessories and spares shops are allowed to open only on 11 June from 8 a.m. till 1 p.m. Dry cleaners, garments shops, opticians, tailoring shops are allowed to open on 11 June till 1 p.m. Photocopy shops and timber merchants had been permitted to open on 9 June till 1 p.m. These orders issued yesterday continue to remain in force. In addition, vegetables, and fruit shops, dairies, bakery, animal feed shops will continue to open every day between 8 a.m. and noon.
Essential public services will continue to be functional as earlier while the government offices will open with SOPs and other restrictions as earlier with limited attendance. Petrol pumps, telecom services, parcel and home delivery services, courier services will open on all days. Restaurants will open only for home delivery while the schools, colleges and private offices will remain closed.
Present restrictions on movement of traffic and persons from other states to Uttarakhand and from Dehradun, Haridwar, etc., to hill districts will continue to remain with a negative RTPCR reports and registration on smart city portal continuing to be mandatory for travel.