People thronging Delhi's Sarojini Nagar Market flout COVID-19 prevention guidelines

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Sarojini Nagar Market gets overcrowded in COVID-19 pandemic (Photo ANI)
Sarojini Nagar Market gets overcrowded in COVID-19 pandemic (Photo ANI)

New Delhi (Delhi) [India], November 22 (ANI): Thousands of people who thronged the Sarojini Nagar Market in Delhi flouted social distancing norms and did not wear masks on Sunday.

New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) vans were seen displaying advisory to prevent COVID-19 pandemic. NDMC officials were distributing masks to street vendors.

Speaking to ANI, NDMC Area Inspector S. Yadav said, "If any street vendor or shop owner is seen flouting social distancing norms, we slap them with a heavy fine as per the guidelines. Our team is trying their best to prevent illegal encroachment activities. Yesterday, we fined 5 people Rs 2,000 each for not wearing masks. The main problem is, not every person can afford to pay the fine. Thus, we are forced to let many people go."

Ashok Randhawa, President of Sarojini Nagar Mini Market Traders Association, said, "Street hawkers run away when they see the NDMC vans approaching the market place. As soon as the NDMC vans leave the place, the street hawkers resume their encroachment activities. This is the main reason why social distancing norms are not being adhered to. We are trying to rectify the problem."

"I have visited many shops here. Nearly all of them are not allowing more than two-three customers inside their shops at a time. Everyone is wearing masks and providing sanitiser at the entrances," he added.

SS Arora, Vice President of Sarojini Nagar Market Association said," I had a meeting with the District Magistrate (DM) yesterday via video conferencing. I informed him about the problem that hawkers had created. Hundreds of hawkers are seen flouting social distancing norms. Also, the police officials are yet to take any concrete action."

On October 19, to curb the rising numbers of COVID-19 cases in the national capital, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had increased the fine to Rs 2,000 for not wearing a mask in the wake of rising COVID-19 cases in the national capital.

The total cases in Delhi stand at 5,23,117 including 39,741 active cases, as per last health bulletin. (ANI)