With the State government introducing new restrictions since Saturday morning, essential trades stopped business by 10 a.m. The police had barricaded entry into several roads in Coimbatore city.
Retail outlets and roadside vendors shut shop, complying with the restrictions. President of the Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Coimbatore, C. Balasubramanian, said the retailers had abided by the new restrictions as they had realised the gravity of the situation.
The wholesale grocery dealers on RG Street closed down by 10 a.m. As timing got reduced, the crowd only increased, said a trader. These were essential commodities and when timing was reduced, there were several challenges, said the wholesale trader.
Wholesale and retail vegetable shops at TK market had poor customer walk in as it was raining and also business hours were reduced. Customers usually come only by 8 a.m. and the market will close by 10 a.m.
“There is a lot of confusion among the traders. We announced today that children will not be permitted into the market,” said M. Rajendran, president of the TK Market vegetable traders association.
Supermarkets also closed by 10 a.m. Usually customer walk-in was high during weekends and a clear picture would be available only on Monday, said sources in supermarkets. Industries in Coimbatore continued to operate on Saturday and there were no major challenges for workers who came to work, said sources.
Industries to close down
Some of the industrial associations in Coimbatore, including the Coimbatore District Small Industries Association, have appealed to their members to stop production from Monday voluntarily for the lockdown period.
The Federation of Coimbatore Industrial Associations, however, decided that its members will continue production.
“Only about 10 % member units are operating. We do not want to stop them,” said J. James, president of Tamil Nadu Association of Cottage and Tiny Enterprises.
In Tiruppur, garment exporting units had also decided to voluntarily stop production.
Those who had workers staying on the premises and if they had orders and raw material stocks might continue to operate. Those manufacturing for the domestic market had also stopped production, said Raja M. Shanmugham, president of Tiruppur Exporters’ Association.
Tiruppur City Police detained 101 vehicles on Saturday for violating the lockdown rules.
According to police sources, 90 two-wheelers and 11 four-wheelers were detained. The vehicles will be released after paying the fine.
The number of cases filed against unnecessary movement of vehicles under section 179 (Disobedience of orders obstruction and refusal of information) of the Motor Vehicles Act in the city police limits saw a decrease from 1,520 cases on Friday to 806 cases on Saturday.
Police personnel from Palladam police station have started using a drone to monitor the area for any violations. Police sources said the Palladam police began employing the drone since Friday.
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