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Srinagar administration prepares for lockdown exit

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Service providers to be trained before opening their outlets in Srinagar; host of measures being taken ahead of Eid to ensure safe festivities

Srinagar: With an eye on graded opening of select sectors, the authorities in district Srinagar on Friday launched a two-week-long programme for the training of all service providers including drivers, barbers, vendors and bakers to make them aware about personal safety, production and distribution of essential items.

Deputy commissioner Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary launched the first module of the training programme designed for more than 500 workers of around 180 bakeries in Srinagar city.

Experts and senior officers from concerned departments were present in programme and sensitised the participants about their respective fields and the need to follow all relevant guidelines and precautions in order to ensure containment of spread of coronavirus infection while going about their business.

Speaking on the occasion the DC said the existence of coronavirus pandemic is a reality and that people will have to learn to live with it adding that following all precautions as due is crucial though.

He said this training program which is one of a series of such programmes the district administration has designed and will be conducted during the next month or so is aimed at sensitising the people about precautions and the need to follow them. He said all main services providers will be trained about precautions, hygiene, social distancing and other notified protocols during the programmes.

It is notable that the bakery sector has been chosen for opening in view of the upcoming Eid festival. The sector follows Parimpora Mandi where 100% testing was done and is now slated for expansion vis-a-vis distribution network in the city.

During the training programme the stakeholders were sensitised about the need to adopt safety procedures and follow advisories issued in this regard. It was informed that bakers will be tested for COVID-19 before being allowed to proceed.

It should be noted that for Eid festival respective bakers will home-deliver required items to consumers in their jurisdictions and operation of bakeries will be strictly conducted in a professional, safe and hygienic framewok. Bakers have been instructed to only sell packed products and to avoid loose bakery items.

D Shahid while speaking on the occasion urged the general public to adhere to social distancing norms and personal hygiene as a part of routine to be adopted to survive the pandemic. He said the administration has roped in print and electronic media and has also invited NGOs, Universities and other organisations as stakeholders in public awareness, training and capacity building for planning a safe exit from lockdown without loosing focus on the fight against pandemic

Experts and senior officers from concerned fields also spoke on the occasion sensitising the participants during the training programme.

The officers informed that all bakers are being provided free PPE kits for their workers mainly involved in manufacturing and delivery of bakery.

It should be noted that a dedicated team of officials has been constituted by the Deputy Commissioner for facilitating stakeholders in production and delivery of items. For areas notified as red zones a special set of measures have been put in place to ensure smooth service n this regard.

Meanwhile the Srinagar district administration plans to train more than 10 thousand service providers during the next one month. This will go alongside gradual opening of select sectors while keeping the focus on public health aspects of the pandemic.

The president and spokesperson of the Bakers Association expressed gratitude to the district administration for this novel initiative keeping in view the public safety and economy as well.

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