Restriction on business hours evokes mixed response

The new restriction on business hours of certain trades in the State from May 6 has evoked a mixed response from traders and consumers.

As per the new restrictions which came into effect from May 6, standalone shops selling provisions and vegetables and tea shops have been directed to wind up their business by noon in order to control the spread of COVID-19, whereas big format shops (with a size of 3000 square feet and above), shopping complex and malls have been prohibited from functioning. Further, all other shops other than provision stores and vegetable shops would remain closed till May 20.

While a section of traders have welcomed the measure, others have pointed out that it would be unfair to direct the large/medium size shops engaged in the sale of provisions and vegetables remain shut while permitting the retail or small traders to continue their business though with restricted business hours.

Viewing the new restrictions as an attempt to drive a wedge among the trading community, president of Mannargudi Traders Association Anand urged the State government to either allow all the traders, especially those engaged in the grocery business, to carry on with their business up to noon every day till May 20 or declare a complete lockdown.

Meanwhile, the secretary, All Traders Association, Kumbakonam, V. Sathyanarayanan, pleaded that all business houses should be allowed to run their shops in view of Ramzan which falls on May 14 and `Akshyathiruthiyai’ subsequently.

Pointing out that the festive season which ends with Ramzan in May would revive only by October-November prior to Deepavali, Mr. Sathyanarayanan requested the State government to allow all the shops to function for at least for seven hours in a day starting from 6 a.m.

Permitting larger shops to function for restricted hours would also help avoid crowding of customers at small and medium shops, he pointed out.

Welcoming the decision to allow hotels in three time slots in a day for take away transactions, Muthukumar of Thanjavur, a social activist, suggested that the saloons, hardware shops and automobile workshops also be permitted to function during the forenoon for the benefit of the public.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 1:08:29 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/restriction-on-business-hours-evokes-mixed-response/article34499665.ece

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