APMC market to be shut from March 25 to 31

Traders take step to reduce crowds

The APMC on Monday decided to shut its Vashi market from March 25 to 31.

Considering that thousands of people enter and exit the market each day, traders have unanimously decided to keep it shut.

The market will be open on Tuesday, but owing to a shortage in mathadi labourers, the traders are not sure how much of the stock will reach the retail market. “Most of the mathadi workers have gone back to their hometowns fearing the spread of the virus. They are the most vulnerable. Because of lack of labourers we are facing a challenge of transportation,” said Ramdas Pavle, a vegetable market trader. “In the vegetable market, at least 1,000 vehicles bring in supplies from farmers each day. Another 1,000 vehicles belonging to customers also come in. At least 10,000 people are in the market at any given time,” he said. With Section 144 of the Indian Penal Code being invoked in the State, “it is wise to shut down the market for a while,” Mr. Pavle said.

Along with the vegetables market, the fruit and onion-potato market will also be shut for the week. “For the first time ever, I have a lock on my office. Usually, I have two-three labourers sleeping there. People should stock up on the required vegetables and fruits for a week on Tuesday and then sit at home. Only then can we fight the virus,” said Sanjay Pansare, a trader in the fruit market.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Special Branch) Suresh Mengade, however, said all essential shops will remain open and transportation of essential goods will be allowed. “The district borders will be closed so a person from Navi Mumbai won’t be allowed to travel to Mumbai, Thane or Raigad unless there is a valid reason, which will be verified,” he said.

In shops, people will need to maintain a distance of four feet from each other, and police officials are making regular rounds with announcements asking people not to crowd in one place, Mr. Mengade said.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 9:09:14 AM |

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