Punjab govt allows shops to open in staggered way for four hours after May 3

Chandigarh, Apr 29 (PTI) The Punjab government on Wednesday allowed the opening of shops in a staggered way on rotation for four hours every morning after May 3. The directions came after Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday announced the extension of the coronavirus curfew in the state by two weeks after May 3, though some relaxations have been given in areas that do not fall under the containment or red zones.

In a statement, the state Home Department said, the issue of opening of shops has been considered in detail and it was decided that all districts should allow opening of shops as per the guidelines of the Union Home Ministry.

But they should do so in a staggered way on rotation, maintaining uniform timings from 7 am to 11 am only, it read.

During the four hours, people will be allowed go out to procure commodities, strictly adhering to the coronavirus prevention measures.

The statement said no one will be allowed to open shops or move around without prior permission of a competent authority.

In line with the fourth corrigendum of the Ministry of Home Affairs on April 24, the state government issued detailed guidelines clarifying that the word 'shopping complexes' is replaced with 'market complexes' within the limits of municipal corporations and municipalities, thereby activities in market complexes would continue to remain prohibited till May 3.

In rural areas, all shops registered under the Shops and Establishment Act, except those in multi-brand and single-brand malls, are allowed to open with 50 per cent strength of workers.

Similarly, in urban areas, all standalone and neighbourhood shops along with those in residential complexes are allowed to open.

The shops in markets, market complexes and shopping malls are not allowed to open, it said.

E-Commerce companies will be permitted for the delivery of essential goods and the sale of liquor will continue to be prohibited, it said.

The state government has allowed all kinds of construction activity in rural areas.

The state home department issued detailed guidelines to the district authorities to allow industrial activities across the state, said an official release here.

In urban areas, only ongoing projects can continue, subject to the availability of workers at site. PTI CHS VSD RDK RDK