Traders in Quetta have rejected the two-week extension in the lockdown announced by the Prime Minister and decided to open their businesses.
Speaking at a press conference after holding talks with the government, Abdul Rahim Kakar, president of the Anjuman Tajiran Balochistan, said that his organisation had decided to fully support the lockdown imposed by the government till April 21.
He, however, said that in the first phase dry-fruit market, shops of dates, agriculture products and tailors and restaurants would open in Quetta from Wednesday. The restaurants would only sell food in parcel, he added.
“We have already suffered huge financial losses due to the lockdown, but we cannot tolerate further losses,” he said and added that they had informed the provincial government regarding their reservations over the extension in lockdown.
He said a government delegation comprising Asghar Khan Achakzai, Saleem Khosa, the commissioner Quetta and a security official appreciated traders’ concerns.
“We have decided to reopen some businesses keeping in mind public needs. The government has announced to give interest-free loans to traders and the ration for 10 days to labourers,” he said.
In replying to a question about extension in the lockdown till April 30, he said the traders had already rejected it. “We are bound to accept the lockdown till April 21 in Balochistan,” Mr Kakar said.