BHOPAL: The traders in Bhopal have demanded that all of them and their staff be vaccinated. The state government has also issued instructions for vaccination of traders and other professionals who are at risk of contracting the virus.
In the order of state government for vaccination, they have excluded bullion traders, garment traders, shoe traders and others as their next target for vaccination.
The focus is on vaccination of grocery shop owners, vegetable vendors, domestic help, staff of restaurants, labourers, workers at control shops, petrol pump staff and so on.
The traders who have been excluded are also demanding vaccination along with others. They say the season of weddings and festivals has passed and, if they are still not vaccinated and allowed to open shops, it will make survival difficult for them.
Rakesh Agrawal, a garment trader, says the government is allowing vaccination of the sections that are at risk, but, sooner or later, the garment sector will also get permission to run. Why wait till then?" he asks. "Why doesnít the government include garment traders, too, in the priority list of vaccination?" he asks. He asks, "If the government has allowed restaurants, grocery shops and other sectors to run, why exclude some of the sectors that are equally essential"
Sarwar Khan, a shoe trader, says there are 250 shoe dealers in Bhopal and, if vaccinated and allowed to run their businesses, at least 1,000 families will have a source of income.
Ajay Devnani, an office-bearer of the New Market Traders' Association, says that the government should adopt a uniform attitude towards all traders. "Sooner or later, all the sectors will be opened and, if the shopkeepers and their staff are vaccinated now, thereíll be less risk all around," says Devnani.
Naresh Agrawal, a bullion trader in Chowk Bazaar, says that they had already tried to ensure vaccination through camps in the market. "It's essential for us and every trader and their staff should be vaccinated," he says.
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