The Covid-19 norms went for a toss in pandemic-stricken Delhi minutes after the government announced a week-long lockdown. Haunted by the memories of the 2020 lockdown, people rushed to stock up on liquor.
The Delhi government has announced a lockdown from Monday night to April 26 morning to curb the surge in the Covid-19 cases in the city. While the shops selling essential items will be allowed to remain open, the liquor shops will remain closed for the duration.
As soon as the order was announced, long queues were spotted outside liquor stores in several parts of Delhi. India Today TV found people lined up for the booze in the Darya Ganj, Karol Bagh and Gole Market areas. People gathered at these liquor stores flouted Covid norms even as Delhi POlice personnel tried to dissipate the crowd. Several customers were trying to purchase an entire carton of the liqour.
News agency ANI reported similar scenes from Khan Market in South Delhi.
Speaking to ANI, a woman who had come to purchase alcohol said, "I have come here to buy two bottles of liquor as no vaccination or medicine can defend against the virus as well as the liquor."
"I have been drinking for 35 years, and have never had to take any medicine. People who drink are all safe from Covid," she said as she urged the government to keep liquor stores open during the lockdown.
Lockdown in Delhi
The Delhi government on Monday announced a citywide lockdown to curb the surge in the Covid-19 pandemic. The curfew will be effective from Monday night till April 26 morning.
Announcing the lockdown, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that the lockdown was essential as the city has been witnessing a massive surge in the Covid-19 crisis and the health system might crumble in the coming days.
CM Arvind Kejriwal said the national capital recorded close to 23,000 cases on Sunday. Delhi, he said, has been recording around 25,000 fresh cases every day. "If we continue to report that many Covid-19 cases every day, I am afraid the healthcare system will collapse," Arvind Kejriwal said.
"Delhi’s health system has been stretched to its limit, is under stress. Harsh measures will have to be taken to prevent a collapse of the health system," CM Kejriwal said.