Pune malls back in business from Aug 5 with safety in mind
Members of Shopping Centres’ Association of India (SCAI) have welcomed the decision to allow malls to operate between 9am and 7pm from August 5.
The decision was taken on July 31 when new guidelines were issued by Pune municipal commissioner Vikram Kumar.
Amitabh Taneja, chairman, Shopping Centres’ Association of India, said, “SCAI has developed and rolled out stringent standard operating procedures (SOPs) in over 500 shopping malls across the country that opened up and have successfully been able to implement social distancing guidelines along with other necessary measures in the best possible manner.”
“The mandatory use of the government’s Aarogya Setu app to enter malls, reduced parking to maintain social distancing, encouraging contactless payments, isolation room facility, availability of oxygen cylinders, ambulance-on-call, are some of the measures undertaken,” added Taneja.
As per data available with the SCAI, there are more than 20 malls in Pune and seven in Pimpri-Chinchwad.
Even though shops in malls were not open since the last four months, mall owners were completely keeping tight security checks and hygiene at the malls.
“We all are geared up to follow the hygiene norms as per SOPs given by Shopping Centres’ Association of India. On every floor, there will be a social distancing officer to guide the people. The officer will keep a track of people to make sure that there is no rush or crowd,” said Shashank Pathak, centre director, Westend mall, Aundh.
The Westend Mall has also tied up with an hospital which is just 500 metres from the mall. If the mall administration finds a case where a person is coughing or he/she displays temperature anomalies then they will be put under the isolation facility,which has been made in the parking slot.
“Patients can be kept safely at the isolation facility. We will call an ambulance and doctors and they will be escorted out of the mall,” added Pathak.
Rashmi Sen, chief operations officer - malls, The Phoenix Mills, said, “This is a positive step towards rekindling India’s consumption story. Our malls have incorporated the highest quality SOPs to ensure the safety of our customers, retail partners and employees across our properties.”
“We are fully prepared to welcome our guests with the new safe shopping experience,” she added.