Friday Apr 23, 2021
KARACHI: The Sindh government has once again decided to change the "safe days" — or days for operating businesses in Karachi — a notification issued from the home department said Thursday.
According to the notification, instead of Saturday and Sunday, all markets and businesses will now remain closed on Fridays and Sundays.
Earlier, the Sindh govt had said that businesses across Sindh will have to close down by 6pm as the province battles the third coronavirus wave.
According to a notification previously issued, businesses were allowed to operate from sehri (dawn) to 6pm and remain closed on two days — Saturdays and Sundays.
The home department had also called for broader lockdowns in areas reporting more than 8% coronavirus positivity.
In response, All Karachi Tajir Ittehad Chairman Atiq Mir had announced that all markets would remain open on Saturday as he reacted to the Sindh government's new policy for commercial activities.
"Changing the market closure days repeatedly is creating too much confusion," he had said, addressing the provincial government.
Mir had demanded that markets should in fact be allowed to operate late in the night during Ramadan.
"Traders have spent billions on purchasing goods [in anticipation of demand] before Eid. Limiting market hours will only create problems for the common citizens," he said.
Similarly, the All Pakistan Anjuman-e-Tajiraan had rejected the government's decision to shut markets and commercial activities two days every week.
"Traders are being targeted under a conspiracy as the federal and provincial governments tussle over politics," it said.
"On the pretext of following the NCOC's orders, the Sindh government is sanctioning the economic murder of [the province's] traders," the union said.
"Instead of shuttering businesses, the government should prioritize vaccinating the population.
"The Sindh chief minister should immediately order the opening of markets for six days every week," the union had demanded. "Business hours should be extended to 10pm, and to 2am after the 15th roza."