Shoppers, vehicles flood Dimapur city as markets reopen

Shoppers, vehicles flood Dimapur city as markets reopen
(From top) Shoppers at a market place and surge in vehicular traffic witnessed on Monday. (NP)
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, AUG 17 (NPN) | Publish Date: 8/17/2020 1:06:28 PM IST
With relaxations on public movement and shops allowed to open from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. from August 17 to August 31 after months of lockdown, Dimapur witnessed heavy rush Monday as thousands rushed to markets and hundreds of vehicles clogging the main arterial roads.
Shops will be open for five days (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday) and remain closed on Wednesday and Sunday as per the decision of the Dimapur District Task Force (DTF) on COVID-19. Despite strict warning being issued by the authorities, in most cases, shoppers were not concerned about maintaining social distancing.
Though the odd-even number order on vehicles allowed to ply was in place, there was huge surge in number of vehicles causing traffic snarls at some points during the day. Public transport resumed with auto-rickshaws plying on the road, albeit with a limited number of passengers.
Deputy Commissioner (DC) Dimapur, Rajesh Soundararajan told Nagaland Post that Monday being first day of total reopening after months of partial lockdown, it was not unexpected that the shopping places were crowded. 
Keeping in mind that everything could not be in lockdown and as people had to earn their livelihoods, the DC said that the DTF decided on a balanced and re-calibrated opening, even as some restrictions were still there. He said a committee had been formed to enforce all COVID-related precautionary measures.
The DC however said New Market, Hazi Park and Hongkong Market areas remained closed as per the directives of the Home department.
Further, he said DTF had received a proposal regarding phase-wise reopening of the shopping areas which has been forwarded to the Home department. 
However, he said the response from the government was awaited. The DC mentioned that the order for sealing the inter-State border was also issued by the government.
DC however asserted that there would be no compromise in precautionary measures vis-à-vis the pandemic.
Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police (CP) Dimapur, Rothihu Tetseo told this reporter over telephone that since the town reopened after a long period , there was heavy rush of shoppers. On the violation of the odd-even traffic rule, Tetseo said challans were issued to the violators.
Meanwhile, explaining the measures adopted to avoid overcrowding in the markets, Dimapur Municipal Council (DMC) administrator, who also heads the sub-committee, Albert Ezung pointed out that vegetable vendors were allowed to sell vegetables only in the colonies/villages but not in daily markets. He said vendors were also prohibited from selling vegetables along the Super Market footpaths. 

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