Mall lovers in the district can return to their favourite stores on Monday after a gap of more than two months.

However, they will have to continue to wait for dine-ins at restaurants and food courts, while cinema halls will also remain closed.

Under the Unlock 1 plan, the district administration has allowed places of worship, shopping malls, hotels, restaurants and other hospitality services to resume business. But, restaurants and eateries can only offer home delivery and takeaway orders for now.

The district has three malls — Virtuous Retail South Asia Ltd (VRSA), commonly known as VR Punjab, located on the National Highway 21 in Kharar; Bestech Mall in Sector 66 and Paras Downtown in Zirakpur.

All these malls boast of top international and national retail brands, besides offering multiplex and culinary experience under the same roof.

Pledging that they will adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOP) laid down by the administration, the mall managements said they will be appointing social distancing officers, especially at takeaway counters at food courts to prevent crowding.

Rishab Malhotra, centre head, VR Punjab Mall, said they will also have a token system to ensure the total visitors were limited to 12,500 per day. “All patrons need to have the Aarogya Setu and COVA apps installed for entry,” he added.

Similarly, Bestech Mall in Sector 66 will allow only 2,500 customers per day. “The foot court will still remain closed to public. However, online delivery is available. Security guards will ensure social distancing, while shops can allow entry to only five customers at a time,” said Pankaj Dubey, the mall head.

Shop owners at VR Punjab have demanded rent waiver for the lockdown period. However, the mall management haven’t taken a decision on it.


Every visitor needs to have Aarogya Setu and COVA apps on their mobile phone

In case of a family, at least one person needs to have the apps

Token system will keep a tab on visitor count

Each shop will have markers outside for customers waiting to enter

Lifts will be shut down. Only escalators will function.

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