Delhi opens its markets but chaos continues as border remains closed

The first day of Unlock 1.0 in the national capital saw life coming back to a new normal as shops, markets and complexes opened up on Monday. Despite ease in restrictions, commuters between Delhi and Noida faced a tough time as the Delhi-Noida border remained sealed even after the relaxations announced by both the state and the Central governments. Commuters were left in a lurch because of the sudden sealing of the borders, as a result of which many Delhi residents couldn’t attend their offices in Noida.

“Why would they suddenly do this? Coronavirus is spreading everywhere. How am I supposed to go to work now? Will the government be answerable if I am not paid or lose my job?” said Abhinav Choubey, a local resident. However, Noida authorities claimed that they could actively trace 43% of active Covid-19 cases in individuals coming from Delhi and defended their move of sealing the border. The confusion is causing trouble to many commuters, a lot of which are struck away from their home. Harsh Rajghata, who got stuck at the border while sharing his plight said, “I went to Delhi to meet my extended family.

Now, they are saying I can’t go back to my family. At one point the Central government says that there’s no need for any passes while on the other hand, the state says no one can pass through the border. Why can’t they have a coordinated idea?” The situation at the DelhiNoida border was chaotic but Delhiites breathed a huge sigh of relief with some activities coming back to normal in the public places. Markets opened up without the odd-even rule, restriction on pillion riders was lifted and salons too are expected to open soon.

However, Delhi’s shopkeepers are skill sceptical about the ongoing risk of coronavirus. “The Delhi government is opening shops only for its tax benefits. Unless we get a grip over the entire corona situation, shops should be open only on an odd-even basis,” said Deepak Sewani, general secretary of Malviya Nagar Market association. It’s now known to everyone that the lockdown hit the lower income groups the most.

With ease in restrictions, auto drivers in Delhi have expressed their happiness and are hopeful that their life would come back on tracks. Restaurants too are now running their kitchens. “We understand that the pre-corona footfall might not be seen again, hence we are adopting new business models. Food delivery is something we are actively considering now,” said restaurant owner Anant Bakshi.

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