KARACHI: Police forced closure of all markets and shopping centres in business districts of the metropolis amid recent spike of COVID-19 cases in the country, ARY News reported on Saturday.
Police officials announced the government orders of shutdown of businesses in Karachi’s District South and other areas on loudspeakers from police mobile vans today.
Under the orders of the Health and Home departments, the businesses will remain open for five days in a week, while the trade activities will remain suspended on Saturday and Sunday.
Police officials also called the shopkeepers to ensure enforcement of the standard operating procedures (SOPs) in the markets and trade centres.
It is to be mentioned here that the traders in Karachi on Friday refused to accept the closure of businesses in the city by 8:00 pm amid the spread of COVID-19 pandemic and announced to launch a movement against it.
Addressing a joint presser, the representatives of Sindh Tajir Ittehad and All City Tajir Ittehad announced that they would not close their businesses from today. “Arrest us and put us behind the bar,” the defiant traders said while announcing the ‘jail bharo’ movement over being forced to accept the lockdown.
“Closing businesses at 8:00 pm will lead to an economic meltdown for the traders,” the representatives of traders claimed, adding that they planned to recover their losses owing to the last year’s lockdown, however, fresh restrictions will further ruin their businesses.
It is pertinent to mention here that Sindh government on Wednesday announced new restrictions to halt the spread of the coronavirus amid the third Covid-19 wave.
The government imposed a complete ban on indoor/outdoor wedding ceremonies from April 6. It ordered that “all kinds of gatherings (indoor/outdoor) will be banned with immediate effect.”
A notification reads that all markets, shopping malls and other businesses will work from 6:00 in the morning till 8:00 pm.