New Delhi: The Delhi government has ordered closure of all shops in Lajpat Nagar’s central Market and the Rui Mandi in central Delhi’s Sadar Bazar wholesale market over alleged violation of Covid-19 safety protocols.
The closure of these two markets was announced in two separate orders issued on Sunday by the district administrations of southeast and central Delhi, respectively. As of Monday, six markets have been shut so far for not adhering to Covid-19 protocols, including the market in east Delhi’s Laxmi Nagar, Gandhi Nagar market, Punjabi Basti market and Nangloi Market.
“An inspection was carried out by the undersigned in Central Market, Lajpat Nagar II, along with Praveer Kumar Singh, SDM (Sarita Vihar) and other members of Covid-19 appropriate behaviour (CAB) enforcement teams deployed in the area, wherein a gross violation of CAB (social distancing within the shops as well as an overall market place, vendors selling edibles without using adequate precautions, etc.) was observed. In view of the above, it is hereby directed that the market is closed with immediate effect until further orders,” said an order issued on Sunday by PK Tripathi, additional district magistrate (Southeast).
The district administration further asked the market association to ensure compliance to Covid-19 appropriate behaviour within a day. “The Market Trader Association is hereby directed to ensure that all measures for ensuring adherence to Covid-19 Appropriate Behaviour are in place within a day of issuance of the order, whereafter a review shall be taken regarding the opening of this segment of the market. Further, the officials of MCD as well Delhi Police are hereby directed that no street-side/unauthorised shops are functional within the Lajpat Nagar Market Area,” read the order.
In a separate order, Arvind Rana, SDM (Kotwali) ordered the closure of the Sadar Bazar Rui Market citing the same reasons upon inspection. The order stated that due to a heavy footfall, shopkeepers were unable to adhere to CAB which may “cause super spreading of Covid-19”. The Rui Market will remain closed till Tuesday or until further orders, whichever is earlier.
In the Lajpat Nagar case, the Southeast district administration has also issued a show cause notice to the concerned market association. “Further, since the Market Trader Association has failed to adhere to the instructions and violated DDMA orders/guidelines, it shall show cause within 01 days as to why actions as per the provisions of section 51 to 60 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, Section 188 of IPC and other applicable laws shall not be proceeded against them,” read the order.
On June 29, the Delhi government ordered the closure of markets in East Delhi’s Laxmi Nagar and adjoining areas until July 5 over alleged violation of Covid-19 safety protocols. However, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) allowed reopening of the Laxmi Nagar market and surrounding markets from Saturday, provided Covid-19 appropriate behaviour is strictly followed. The order to reopen was issued on Friday, following a meeting among DDMA (East), Delhi Police, the MCD and the market association.
On Saturday evening, SDM of Punjabi Bagh ordered the complete closure of the Punjabi Basti and Janta Market in Nangloi due to shopkeepers and the public not following the necessary health protocols. The order stated that all shops in these two markets will remain completely shut from Sunday to Tuesday, including the weekly off on Monday.