Chandigarh, Sep 26 (PTI) A body representing owners of marriage palaces and resorts on Saturday demanded from the Punjab government that they be allowed to operate with coronavirus norms in place.
The body also threatened to resort to an agitation if the permission was not granted to them by the month-end.
Sukhdev Singh Sidhu, president, Punjab Marriage Palace and Resort Association (PMPARA), said they could not understand why they were not being permitted to operate despite having spacious gardens, halls and proper parking.
On the contrary, hotels, restaurants, malls, gyms and markets that have been allowed to operate are having less space, he said, adding that coronavirus standard operating procedures can be implemented easily by them.
Sidhu said his association has already handed over a letter in this regard to Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.
“There is no forthcoming action yet by the Punjab government. We want to give the state government an ultimatum that if it does not take the decision of reopening marriage palaces and resorts by end of this month, the association will adopt a course of agitation and protest from October 2,” he said.
Sidhu said Punjab has over 5,000 marriage palaces and resorts which have been closed for over seven months.
This has rendered hundreds of vendors connected with marriage functions and other events jobless, resulting in massive unemployment and extreme financial distress for marriage palace owners, he added.
Karamjit Singh Canadian, joint secretary of the body, said all norms related to coronavirus will be followed once allowed to operate marriage palaces and resorts.
“A majority of venues have a capacity to accommodate 1,000-2,000 guests. If the government allows reopening with 300 guests per event, all vendors left jobless will get work. Even the state government will gain as revenue will start pouring in,” he said.
Under the current phase of the coronavirus lockdown, most states neighbouring Punjab have allowed events up to 100 guests while marriage palaces and resorts in the state remain shut.
Raman Khanna, president, Mohali Marriage Palace Association, said the marriage season has started and they are feeling the heat as people from Punjab are heading for Chandigarh, Panchkula or even Himachal to organise marriages.” 'This coupled with months of zero income may result in the closure of most marriage palaces and resorts if the government does not get up from its slumber and orders reopening,” he said. PTI VSD RDK RDK