The Federation of Associations of Maharashtra (FAM), at a meeting of its members on Tuesday, discussed the impact of the present lockdown order issued by the Government of Maharashtra, in effect from 8pm on April 5, whereby all shops, malls, private office, godowns and business establishment would remain closed until April 30, 2021.
Only essential commodities and service providers would be allowed to work. There was confusion among shopkeepers and traders on Tuesday morning about the government earlier declaring total lockdown on weekends from 8pm on Friday to 7am on Monday but the SOP saying there was a partial lockdown.
According to traders, this was no less than a complete lockdown. At the meeting it was decided that the FAM would send a final request to the state government to come out with relaxations to its orders and allow traders to open their shops at least from 9am to 6pm. They have agreed to follow all the guidelines as per government directives.
In the event no such relaxation is provided, on Thursday, FAM members across the state have planned a black ribbon protest from 1pm to 3pm. They will stand outside their shops with black ribbons around their mouths, while maintaining social distancing and will ring bells to draw the attention of the state government to their plight. If their peaceful protest is unheeded, they have threatened a peaceful non-cooperation movement, the details of which will soon be made available.