In its recent development The Government of Punjab has hinted a gradual reopening of various businesses that had been closed for a number of days due to lock down in the whole country as a precautionary measure against Covid-19.
The government through its notification on April 03, 2020, allowed to open the following businesses:
- Textile Industry: 36 types of businesses
- Sports Industry: 10 types of businesses
- Surgical Industry: 07 types of businesses
- Auto parts industry: 03 types of businesses
- Pharmaceutical Industry: 25 types of businesses
- Leather and Leather Garments Industry: 22 types of businesses
- Fruit and Vegetables: 07 types of businesses
- Meat and Meat Products: 08 types of businesses
In fact the government has issued three orders in the last couple of days and exempted around 10 different types of industries/businesses from Section 144 that had been implemented in the province so as to avoid the Corona Virus from spreading among the people. The orders read to carry on the activities of the exempted businesses with minimum possible staff and all precautionary measures against the fatal outbreak that had been mentioned in the SOPs issued by the government earlier.
Three notifications have been issued to exempt various businesses from lock down restrictions
Moreover the home department through another notification allowed the dry cleaners and laundries to re-continue their operations across the province. The services were allowed to resume with one helper (Maximum) and implementing all the precautionary measures as per SOPs.
In addition to all, the home department on 4th April, 2020 allowed the exchange companies (licensed by SBP) to open their branches/ offices and outlets in Punjab. The notification stated that since the exchange companies are providing essential financial services to the public therefore they are free to carry out their services after ensuring the precautionary measures that had been included in the SOPs against the Corona Virus.
“Govt should only close the businesses involving public dealings”, demands the business sector
The sources claimed that the Government is seriously thinking of gradual resumption of the businesses to make people earn their livelihood however it all depends upon the situation of the intensity of the Virus. It is important to know that the Government had closed all the businesses except the medical stores and stores for the necessities in the first step. Later it was instructed that the food stores will have to observe the timings 9 am to 5 pm and no food store will remain open after 5 pm sharp. Strict actions were taken against those who did not comply with the official orders and kept open their shops after the designated time.
People belonging to various professions and businesses have expressed their concerns on the Government Policies and steps so far. They think that the Government should close the businesses that are engaged with public dealings however the businesses where a little public dealing is involved should be exempted from the closure. Prime Minister Imran Khan in his last address to the nation intimated that the Government is planning to open the agriculture sector in the second step. In the first step, the construction sector was announced to carry on its operational activities.