Relief for wide section of trade amid three-week lockdown extension in Punjab

Updated 10 May 2020

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Shops to remain open four days a week in Punjab. — AFP/File
Shops to remain open four days a week in Punjab. — AFP/File

LAHORE: The Punjab government on Saturday extended lockdown for another three weeks with exemption to the construction-sector related businesses, factories, export industry, retail shops, hair salons and gymnasiums subject to strict adoption of SOPs and guidelines.

All shops and businesses exempt under this order shall open for four days in a week from 8am to 5pm. The businesses will remain closed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Punjab primary and secondary healthcare department in continuation of its April 24 order and in consonance with the advice received from the federal government in the National Coordination Committee meeting, has extended the applicability of lockdown till May 31.

The large shopping malls, educational institutions, restaurants, hotels, marquees, marriage halls, cinemas and places of large gatherings will remain closed. The public processions, gatherings, congregations of all nature, organized sports events and concerts, public transport except motorcycle-rickshaw and rickshaw will remained suspended.

Shops to remain open four days a week in Punjab

Following pressure from the business community, traders and shopkeepers with regard to their economic suppression, the Punjab government has allowed opening of Phase-II of the construction sector, i.e. businesses of steel and PVC Pipes, electric appliances, manufacturers of steel and aluminum equipment, ceramic and paints industries, sanitary, and hardware stores subject to the adoption of SOPs/ guidelines issued for industrial units and sale points.

The government notified that all factories not included in negative list including export industry will be allowed to resume their operations. However, detailed notification in this regard shall be issued separately by the industries department.

All retail shops except large shopping malls subject to adoption of SOPs and guidelines would operate for four days a week.

According to this new order, all hair salons, barber shops and gymnasiums will also be allowed to open subject to adoption of SOPs and guidelines.

As earlier, the grocery stores, general stores, karyana stores, bakeries, atta chakkis, dairy shops, chicken and meat/fish shops, fruit and vegetable shops and all kinds of mandis including grain, fruit, cattle and vegetable mandis, tandoors and all auto workshops will remain open seven days a week from 9am to 5pm.

The postal and courier services, for pick and drop from/ at doorsteps and its relevant inter-city, inter-provincial vehicular movement will be allowed from 9am to 5pm seven days a week. The tyre puncture shops, spare parts shops, driver hotels, petrol pumps and oil depots, takeaway and home delivery from restaurants will remain open round-the-clock seven days a week.

For the resumption of public transport, the government has notified that meetings would be held with the representatives of transport operators at provincial and divisional level to prepare SOPs for operationalisation of transport sector.

Published in Dawn, May 10th, 2020