KOCHI: To ensure smooth business and avoid Covid spread due to crowding at Ernakulam market during Onam season, Kochi corporation authorities convened a meeting to discuss the measures to be implemented.
The meeting was convened by Kochi Mayor M Anilkumar and attended by the district collector, city police commissioner and traders organisations’ representatives, after merchants and traders raised concerns about the state their businesses had been in following the inclusion of the corporation limits in C category.
Being the state’s primary commercial city, indefinite closure of businesses in Kochi will adversely affect the economy and livelihood of merchants and traders, they had said.
The meeting decided to streamline activities at the market during Onam season. The number of Covid tests in the market will be increased and all merchants, workers and headload labourers in Ernakulam Market and Broadway will be vaccinated through a special drive starting Monday. The plan is to vaccinate at least 2,000 people as part of the initiative.
“Onam is one of the busiest seasons for traders, but everything should be done in adherence to Covid protocol. We are trying to ensure safe shopping. For that, traders, workers and the public should follow the norma,” Anilkumar said.
The meeting also decided to manage traffic in such a way that hassle-free movement of vehicles is ensured at the market. A one-way system will be implemented to regulate traffic. Entry and exit points will be different.
Parking facilities for shop owners and employees at Broadway will be arranged outside the market for smooth movement of vehicles. Mayor Anilkumar and District Collector Jafar Malik will hold a meeting with the Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) officials to use the GCDA-owned land at Marine Drive for parking purposes.
2,246 new cases, 1,621 recoveries
Another 2,246 people tested Covid positive in the district on Sunday. The day’s test positivity rate stood at 9.34%. Meanwhile, 1,621 more patients recovered from the illness. A total of 22,108 patients are currently undergoing treatment for Covid in the district, of whom as many as 16,367 are at their homes and 1,019 at various private hospitals.