Delhi's famous Chandni Chowk market will be almost entirely closed to check the recent surge in COVID-19 cases. Apart from a few shops along the main road all shop will be shut till April 25, announced a Chandni Chowk traders' body on Sunday.
"Today Chandni Chowk Sarv Vyapar Mandal in an emergency meeting with its members has decided to request its members to keep their establishment closed till April 25 in light of very serious condition of the virus spreading at very large volumes. We will take a decision after assessing the condition next Sunday," informed Chandni Chowk Sarv Vyapar Mandal's Sanjay Bhargava.
Several market associations also supported the decision to keep shops closed amid the rising COVID-19 infections. Delhi Kirana Committee of Khari Baoli Market and Chemical Merchant Association of Tilak Bazaar also decided to keep markets closed till April 21.
Earlier today, Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) wrote to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Shri Anil Baijal and Chief Minister Shri Arvind Kejriwal, urging them to impose a lockdown in Delhi for next 15 days.
"CAIT had a zoom meeting of prominent trade leaders of Delhi during the day in which after much discussion, it was decided that the traders organisations of Delhi will hold discussion with their respective associations tomorrow to take formal decision of self lockdown," CAIT Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal and State President Vipin Ahuja said in a statement.
CAIT also urged LG Baijal and CM Kejriwal to arrange medical facilities for curing coronavirus infections in the national capital.
Several market associations based in Delhi had on Friday called for strict enforcement of COVID-19 protocols and expressed that lockdown is not a solution. A meeting was held amongst all major retail markets and suggested that there should be more strict enforcement of COVID-19 protocols during the day as well rather than just depending on measures like night curfew, weekend curfew or lockdown.
In a joint statement issued by over 12 market associations, they had expressed a common view that implementing lockdown is definitely not a solution to take charge of the current pandemic. Delhi government had imposed weekend curfew at 10 pm on Friday and will continue till 5 am on Monday.
Delhi on Sunday reported 25,462 COVID-19 cases, the highest single-day spike recorded in the city to date, according to data shared by the Health Department. The national capital also reported 161 deaths, while the positivity rate shot up to 29.74 per cent, also the highest so far.
(Edited by Vivek Punj)