Eid Shopping Gains Momentum Amid Third Wave of COVID-19:
With Eid just around the corner, the main markets of Karachi are packed with a rush of people thronging shopping malls. With massive traffic jams on the roads, social distancing is ineffective. People are seen flouting standard operating procedures (SOPs) set by the government to mitigate surge in COVID-19 cases.
Karachi’s markets (Bohri bazaar, Zainab market, Jodia bazaar, Hyderi and Jama Cloth), shopping plazas ( Rabi Centre, Gulf Way, Gold Mark I and II) and malls (Dolmen, Omega, Milennium, Luckyone, Forum and Atrium) that are set on roads, congested and blind alleys despite spending millions on monthly security are failed in ensuring SOPs.
Hundreds of people are seen queuing on counters.
Despite being conscious of the gravity of COVID-19, local markets allow people to throng malls without masks, jeopardising staff and shoppers live at risk for the third wave of virus infections as millions come in contact during shopping. The markets cannot be solely blamed for this as a significant part of negligence and ignorance falls on people’s side who endanger them and their loved ones by not wearing masks and keeping social distancing.
The total number of COVID-19 cases in Pakistan has picked up steam as Pakistan has added about 829,933 confirmed cases. According to the NCOC, Pakistan on Saturday reported 113 more fatalities from COVID-19 as the third wave of Coronavirus continues to take lives despite government measures to contain the virus. If flouting of SOPs continues, rampaging infections will collapse Pakistan’s health system with shortages of medical oxygen and hospital beds.
The neighboring country India has reported 400,000 cases after 10 consecutive days tally over 300,000.
According to official data, deaths from COVID-19 reached 3,500 over the past 24 hours, taking the total toll in India to 211,853. The world’s biggest producer of COVID-19 vaccines has a finite number of shots remaining, worsening infections that has overwhelmed morgues and hospitals while families scramble for scarce oxygen and medicines.
According to the (NCOC): “Shopping malls, Chand Raat bazaars, public places, mehndi stalls, and recreational spots will remain closed from 8 to 16 May.”
The NCOC, in a statement, further said: “The current surge of COVID-19 cases in the country demands effective measures to control its further spread with special emphasis on reducing mobility during Eid-ul-Fitr.”
On occasions like Eid, everyone wants to dress in new clothes.
Young children wear traditional outfits (shalwar kameez). Most Little girls wear eastern garb with a touch of churidar. Furthermore, men have a choice of wearing overworked fancy stuff or the subtly worked shalwar kameez. Women embellish their clothes with laces rather than buy ready-made embroidered Kurtis or go for embroidery that costs less but has the same effect. In contrast, some prefer ready-made Anarkali style shirts, teamed with less pricey khussas and simple churidar.
Mehndi and bangles seem to be the luxury for women on Chand Raats, the demand for which has not gone down. Although the bangles accessible in the market are less extravagant, women are seen following the propensity to take their Eid clothes to the bangle store and match their bangles with the colours of Eid clothes.
This Eid, we must keep to the spirit of simplicity.
That is not to say we would not be giving ourselves a treat, but we can spend more money helping others rather than going to markets, flouting SOPs and buying branded clothes for ourselves.
Eid Shopping Gains Momentum Amid Third Wave of COVID-19. However, on this joyous occasion of Eid, let’s all adhere to the COVID-19 precautionary measures and the Government’s Public Emergency Regulations in order to prevent the spread of the virus.