Liquor shops across states including Chhattisgarh, UP, Karnataka witnessed long queues after stores were allowed to reopen across several states in the country during the extended phase of lockdown beginning today.
While in some places the tipplers put up a disciplined show of ‘physical distancing’ while most other sites witnessed a free-for-all crowd, giving a harrowing time to the police who struggled to keep them apart.
A lathi charge
Police had to resort to mild lathi-charge outside a liquor store in Delhi on Monday after social distancing norms were flouted by eager patrons standing in a long queue outside the premises.
Huge rush at shops on first day
Long queues were seen outside liquor vends which were allowed to open after 40 days. At the stretch between CTO and Scandal Point, people, wearing masks, gathered in large numbers without maintaining social distancing norms to buy liquor. One-way entry and exit of people were allowed on Mall road, Scandal Point and markets, and police have been deployed in large number to ensure that lockdown norms are observed.
The reopening of liquor stores is subject to certain conditions. People had started to flock outside alcohol shops since the wee hours on Monday anticipating to buy their preferred choice of booze.
The guidelines say that not more than five customers should be allowed in at a time. For this, there will be five circles drawn in front of the liquor shop with six feet distance between two circles. The shops have been asked to display social distancing guidelines/norms and cause them to be enforced strictly.