In Mumbai, shops selling essential goods can operate 24/7

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Uddhav Thackeray held a review meeting at Varsha Bungalow, the chief minister’s residence, with senior bureaucrats to take stock of the situation. (File)

To reduce crowding in shops selling essential commodities, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said all such shops were allowed to operate for 24 hours every day. They have, however, been asked to adhere to social distancing measures and ensure sanitation and cleanliness.

Uddhav held a review meeting at Varsha Bungalow, the chief minister’s residence, with senior bureaucrats to take stock of the situation. The meeting was attended by Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray, Transport Minister Anil Parab, Chief Secretary Ajit Mehta and BMC chief Praveen Pardeshi, among others.

“The crowding at the shops has increased due to fears around COVID-19,” an official said. “To reduce the crowding, the decision to allow all shops selling essential commodities to operate for 24 hours every day was taken.” The official added that this optional and has not been made mandatory.

The official further said it will be mandatory for all shops to adhere to social distancing norms and enforce a gap between two customers with the help of markings.