After ‘janta curfew’, Ghaziabad residents, administration gear up for lockdownUpdated: Mar 22, 2020 23:19 IST
After observing the “janta curfew” on Sunday in response to the call given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Ghaziabad residents are bracing for the lockdown announced by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath.
The chief minister Sunday issued orders for a lockdown in 15 districts, including Ghaziabad and Gautam Budh Nagar, from March 23 to March 25.
“Most of the shops were shut in Vaishali and no auto-rickshaws were plying on the roads on Sunday to observe the people’s curfew. We will have to see if shops that cater to essential commodities open on Monday or not. We have stocked some commodities, but items like fruits, vegetables need to be bought fresh. In our high-rise, we have also asked our domestic helps to take a paid leave,” Mohit Sharma, resident, Sector 1in Vaishali, said.
“We have also made arrangements that if one person goes out to buy medicines, neighbours can ask her or him to bring medical supplies for them as well. We want less number of people to be on roads and we feel that a lockdown is necessary to contain the Covid-19 outbreak,” he added.
Many residents living in high-rises in Indirapuram, Vaishali, Vasundhara, Kaushambi, Raj Nagar Extension and Crossings Republik among others came to their rooftops and balconies well before 5pm as a way to thank the medical fraternity in fighting coronavirus.
“We had rehearsed putting up a united front and standing in solidarity with those working to fight the outbreak. Residents of high-rises came out to blow conches, drums etc. We even played religious chants on our mobile phones from 4pm to 5pm,” said Namita Gaur, a resident of Crossings Republik.
“At 5pm we started ringing bells and blowing conches. We plan to continue to do this during the lockdown as the collective act binds people together and brings positivity,” she added.
Auto drivers in the city stayed off roads during the voluntary curfew but some autos were roped in to ferry people who were virtually stranded at railway stations, bus stands etc.
“We will support the lockdown call as it is in our interest. No one wants to get infected by the coronavirus disease. All our autos were off roads on Sunday, but we sent 10-15 autos at places like railway stations, bus stands and ferried people to their homes. We will continue with this arrangement till the lockdown is over,” Dilshad Ahmad, member, Ghaziabad auto-rickshaw Chalak Sangh.
AK Singh, the regional manager officer of UP state road transport corporation (UPSRTC) said UPSRTC buses will shut inter-city and inter-state operations as announced by the chief minister.
“No buses will operate during the lockdown. We will clean and sanitise all the buses during this period. Some buses will be made available to the administration staff to facilitate their travel to work,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Ghaziabad administration on Sunday roped in 38 inspector rank officers of different departments to pose as customers to check overcharging by vendors in different markets.
“Three vegetable traders in the old vegetable market in Ghaziabad were caught selling vegetables at higher prices. The three will be booked under the provisions of the essential commodities act and a report has been sent to the district magistrate,” the administration said in a statement.
Despite repeated attempts, district magistrate Ajay Shankar Pandey could not be reached for comment.