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Places of worship, shopping malls will continue to remain closed in Jharkhand

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Ranchi: All places of worship and shopping malls will continue to remain closed in Jharkhand as no new lockdown relaxations have been allowed by the state government, an official said on Monday. The lockdown guidelines issued by Chief Secretary Sukhdev Singh on June 4 would continue to be in force in the state, the official said.

Movement of individuals is strictly prohibited from 9 pm to 5 am except in essential cases and any kind of gathering is also prohibited, he said.

Jharkhand is still in the “lockdown mode” as coronavirus cases are increasing by the day with the return of the migrants to the state.

A total of 1,143 COVID-19 cases have been reported in the state so far, the official said. Of the total 1,143 novel coronavirus cases detected in the state, 822 are migrants.

Though many shops have reopened, not more than five persons are allowed to enter the shop at a time.

According to reports from across the state, thin traffic has been witnessed in several areas though auto-rickshaws and e-rickshaws are allowed to ply, adhering to safety protocols strictly.

Intra-district movement of buses is allowed, he said.

“Traffic on the main road in Ranchi is thin,” Nihar Tulsiyan, the owner of Tulsiyan Jewellers, said.

In compliance with the state government’s guidelines, Tulsiyan said he doesn’t want any big gathering of customers in his shop.

“We don’t want a crowd in our shop in view of safety and security of ourselves as well as the customers. We have to take care of our staff as well and a customer is allowed to sit three chairs apart, (in spite of) the shop having daily footfall of only two to three customers,” Tulsiyan said.

Those two-three customers are also focused on quick purchase and leaving as everyone is afraid of getting sick or contracting the infection, he added.

He said only three jewellery shops at the Rospa Tower, one of the popular shopping centres of the state capital, open at 11 am and they are closed by the time the sun sets.

“We have suffered heavy losses due to the lockdown, but it is not under anybody’s control. Still what we would like to request is some waiver like, say, we have not used internet services for the last two months, but we have to pay over Rs 5000 to re-activate it,” he said.

A fruit vendor said normal customer inflow was still a far cry.

Inder Agarwal, the president of Adityapur Small Industry Association, said, “The industry has suffered loss during the last over two months. Now, 20 per cent of the total operation is being functioned with strict adherence to the standard operating procedure.”

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