Delhi govt sends fresh proposal to L-G to open hotels, weekly markets, gyms
The fresh proposal sent by revenue minister Kailash Gahlot said such economic activities should be allowed to resume in Delhi since the Covid-19 situation had improved and the number of cases was coming down.Updated: Aug 07, 2020 08:27 IST
The Delhi government on Thursday sent a fresh proposal to lieutenant-governor Anil Baijal, seeking his permission to allow hotels, gymnasiums, and weekly markets to reopen in the national capital.
The fresh proposal sent by revenue minister Kailash Gahlot said such economic activities should be allowed to resume in Delhi since the Covid-19 situation had improved and the number of cases was coming down.
“The L-G is aware that the situation in Delhi is fast improving and economic activities need to be opened up so that those people who have been suffering for the last four months due to imposition of the lockdown, can resume their jobs and business, albeit with restrictions,” read the proposal sent to the L-G.
The new proposal was sent almost a week after the L-G rejected a similar suggestion of the Delhi government to open hotels and weekly markets. In Thursday’s proposal, the government included its request to open gyms and yoga centres also.
Delhi on Thursday recorded 1,299 new cases of Covid-19, a sharp drop from the middle of June, when more than 2,000 new cases were being added regularly. Daily new cases hit a high of 3,947 on June 23.
Gahlot said the people of Delhi are conscious of the risk of Corona and cited examples of UP and Karnataka, which have allowed these services to resume despite a surge in Covid cases.
“When the central government is allowing some sectors to be opened in those states, which have become hots pots of Corona, and at the same time Centre is stopping Delhi from opening these sectors, when Delhi, through its hard work and discipline, has been able to control Corona so well, then Delhiites are asking ‘why are we being made to suffer? Why is our livelihood under attack?’,” Gahlot wrote.
The L-G’s office did not comment on the matter till this report was filed.
The minister wrote that hotels contributed to 8% of the state’s GDP, while weekly markets provide employment to 5 lakh poor families.
He wrote, “Since the time the L-G rejected our recommendation (to open up these sectors) last week, there has been a huge public uproar. The entire Delhi now wants to work towards economic recovery. Delhi should not be stopped. Delhi showed the way to the country to tackle Corona. Delhi will now show the way for economic recovery also.”
“Therefore, I would urge that considering the improved Corona situation and the sentiments of Delhiites, we should open up these sectors. It has been a week now when our recommendation was rejected by the LG. We may now urge the L-G to reconsider his decision. MHA has also permitted the opening of yoga centres and gyms in its latest guidelines. These activities should be permitted in Delhi. However, the SOPs issued by the Government of India should be followed,” Gahlot wrote.
On July 30, Delhi had decided to allow hotels, hospitality services, street hawkers to operate and do away with the night curfew hours between 10pm and 5am under the Centre’s Unlock 3 plan. The government intended to allow weekly bazaars to operate for a week on a trial basis to check if social distancing norms are adhered to.
A day later, Baijal rejected the decision,saying the Covid-19 situation continued to be “fragile” in Delhi and the threat is still “far from over”.
Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia on Saturday wrote to Union home minister Amit Shah, urging him to allow hotels and weekly markets to reopen and issue directions to the L-G.