COVID-19 threat fails to dampen spirit of shoppers in Karachi

KARACHI:Repeated warnings about their vulnerability to the coronavirus at busy places appeared to be falling on deaf ears as citizens mainly representing mid and low income groups here on Thursday were witnessed thronging different markets popular for selling clothes, shoes and accessories, considered essential for Eid celebrations, at affordable rates.

Neither the surging temperature nor the COVID-19 threat could dampen the public spirit – many of them actually rubbished the very idea of being exposed to any sort of viral infection while there was also no dearth of people who thought that the curve was fast flattening and it was safe enough to resume normal lives.

“Even what authorities are claiming with regard to new COVID-19 cases and associated deaths hold any truth I know that I and my family will die at a set time so why to worry,” said Azra Bano looking for a suit for her daughter in Bohri Bazar.

People, barring a few, were little bothered about importance of physical distancing, however, the volunteers around were trying their level best to follow the SOPs agreed upon by the shopkeepers and retailers to help avert or at least minimize the chances of COVID spread.

“We have very little to enjoy and Eid ul Fitr is definitely a major festival that has to be celebrated with full zeal,” said Iftikhar Hussain who did agree that simplicity was repeatedly emphasized by our Holy Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him).

“But under our particular circumstances we are not going overboard and are just trying to celebrate a festival within our means,” argued the gentleman working for a private firm.

Many of those busy in shopping were also fasting and at times seemed to be in a sort of trance as if they may not get another chance to be out of their houses hence reaching to a decision that come what life is once to live -these were the people majority of whom belonged to hand to mouth category.

Dr. Farida Hasan commenting on the situation did not reject possibility of herd immunity people may develop but warned that its pros and cons can not be ignored.

“This is high time that we focus on inculcating discipline and respect for law among our nation through concerted efforts,” she said suggesting modification in curriculum right from basic levels at schools and madaris.