TIMESOFINDIA.COM | Jun 8, 2020, 18:56 IST
NEW DELHI: Worshippers and shoppers wore masks, stood 6 feet (2 metres) part and went through thermal scanners at religious places and shopping malls in cities across the country as the government relaxed the coronavirus-induced lockdown earlier this month.
However, social distancing norms were breached at several locations as devoutees thronged the places of worship.
Shopping malls, restaurants and other establishments reopened in West Bengal on Monday after a gap of over two
months with the state government allowing further relaxations as part of "Unlock-1", the first phase of a calibrated exit from the coronavirus-induced lockdown across the country. The state government has officially extended the lockdown in the state till June 30. People came out on the streets of Kolkata in large numbers, with many flouting the social-distancing norms. Traffic snarls were reported from several areas of the metropolis as government offices started operating with a 70-per cent attendance and most private offices and establishments recommenced near-normal functioning. Though government buses were out in full strength, private buses were less in number, adding to the woes of commuters, as other public modes of transport like metro railway and local trains are yet to recommence operations.
Most of the temples, shopping malls, eateries, hotels and offices in Gujarat reopened after nearly 75 days with specific guidelines to be followed at these places. Most of the temples, shopping malls, eateries, hotels and offices in Gujarat reopened after nearly 75 days with specific guidelines to be followed at these places. Mosques, gurdwaras and churches were also reopened after sanitisation. The Dwarkadhish temple in Devbhumi Dwarka, Somnath temple in Veraval, Shamlaji temple in Aravalli, ISKCON temple in Ahmedabad, Ambika temple in Surat, Balaji temple in Rajkot and temples in major places were opened for the public in Gujarat. Presence at some places was marked and at some places marginal. The famous Bhadrakali and Camp Hanuman temples in Ahmedabad were not opened for being in containment zones. Ambaji temple in Banaskantha will not reopen till June 12 and Shaktipeeth temple in Bahucharaji and Jalaram temple in Virpur, both famous as pilgrimages will be reopened on June 15. Eateries like hotels and restaurants were are also opened across the state from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Restaurants have been allowed to operate at 50 per cent capacity. Hotels have been allowed to operate round the clock and at full strength. Shop owners in various malls across the state seemed happy reopening after two-and-a-half months. Shop owners were seen getting themselves and their places ready to welcome customers in Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot and other places in Gujarat. Shopping malls have been allowed to operate from 8 am to 7 pm too.
Most temples across Uttarakhand reopened their gates for devotees on Monday after a gap of more than three months except the famous Chardham in Garhwal Himalayas and those within the limits of Dehradun municipal area. Barring Chardham and the temples located within Dehradun municipal area, all shrines in the state have been reopened, CEO of Devasthanam Board Ravinath Raman said. A decision on reopening Chardham, including Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri, for pilgrims will be taken in a day or two after taking priests and stakeholders into confidence over the matter, he said. Chardham priests are opposed to opening their gates for throngs of devotees who may be coming from high-load COVID-19 zones.
Shopping malls opened on Monday in Lucknow but shops inside the malls remained closed.
The Adarsh Vyapar Mandal said that majority of the shops in malls did not reopen on Monday in support of their demands.
"The shop keepers also want that the rent and maintenance fee for the next 12 months should also be reduced since all shop keepers have suffered losses during the lockdown. They are not in a position to pay exorbitant rents being charged by malls," the organisation said.
Places of worship, shopping malls, hotels and restaurants reopened in Bihar after a gap of over two months on Monday. The management of Mahavir Mandir, a famous temple of Patna, has made all arrangements to welcome devotees. A thermal screening is being conducted at the entry gate of the temple, while automatic hand-sanitiser dispensers have been installed at several places inside and outside the temple. A large number of people thronged the temple on Monday. "I am extremely happy that I have come here today as it is my marriage anniversary. I have come here to seek blessings for a better future. I had visited the temple just a day before the lockdown," a woman said. Similar arrangements were made at the Patna Sahib Gurdwara and the Vishnupad temple at Gaya. The Mahabodhi temple, however, will reopen on June 10, Bodhgaya Temple Management Committee member Arvind Kumar Singh said. The P&M Mall, a prominent shopping mall in the state capital, is all set to welcome people after more than two months. Barring a few, most of the shops were closed. Waiters were seen wearing face masks and gloves in restaurants, which have reduced their sitting arrangements by up to 50 per cent of their capacity to maintain social distancing.
Business remained lean as malls and shopping centres in the national capital reopened on Monday after more than two months, with only a few people stepping out to shop and eat. Though most of the shops, offices and restaurants reopened at Saket's Select City Walk, one of the prominent malls in the city, only a handful of shoppers visited it in the initial hours. The focus remained on the hourly disinfection of the common areas, contact-less shopping and physical distancing to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Staff were seen measuring body temperature and keeping a record of the visitors entering the premises. A contactless sanitiser dispenser and a disinfection tunnel has been installed at the entry gate of the mall.
Many shopping malls in Jaipur reopened on Monday, as the state government decided to gradually ease restrictions imposed to check the spread of Covid-19.
“All the arrangements for sanitization and thermal scanning have been made. A buffer area has also been made where the material and goods will be kept for a certain period of time before being shifted to shops,” Anoop Bartaria, MD of Jaipur's World Trade Park mall said.
He said, “Entire mall has been disinfected and the arrangement of sanitization is also there at different places.”
Some hotels and restaurants, however, remained closed despite permission from authorities to start their business.
Shopping malls, hotels and restaurants in Arunachal Pradesh reopened on Monday after nearly a two-and-half-month-long hiatus due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown. Places of worship, however, will remain closed till June 30. Authorities of shopping malls in the state capital were seen conducting thermal screening of customers and sanitising them, besides enforcing the wearing of masks and social distancing. Several fast food outlets, however, have only commenced take home services.
more from times of india news