COVID-19: Ugadi celebrations to be a low-key affair

Coronavirus effect: Ugadi celebrations to be a low-key affair amid lockdown

KR Market witnessed heavy rush of people eager to buy festive essentials on Monday. DH photo/Anup Ragh T

The outbreak of Covid-19 has cast a dark spell on the city’s jubilant mood to celebrate Chandramana Ugadi. Ushering in the New Year, the festival will be a low-key affair this year with the lockdown ordered by the state government to stem the spread of Covid-19. 

Urging the people to observe the festival on a low key note, the government has imposed restrictions on trade and social activities. Even as many were anticipating that the lockdown would be relaxed allowing the people to celebrate the festival, the Bengaluru District administration has refused to relax any conditions.

“Not one restriction will be relaxed or lifted for the festival,” G N Shivamurthy, Deputy Commissioner, Bengaluru Urban clarified.

Even though the sale of meat is exempted, the mutton shops have to follow stringent BBMP rules to ensure hygiene.

Perhaps, in anticipation of the lockdown order and to prepare for the festival, citizens flocked markets and supermarkets in large numbers on Monday evening.

Areas like Malleswaram, KR Market, Sarakki Market witnessed heavy rush with people coming in large numbers to buy festive essentials. Keeping in mind the nine-day-long lockdown, people began purchasing commodities in huge quantities.

Price shoot up

The prices of vegetables and fruits had nosedived for over a fortnight with people fearing to buy anything owing to the outbreak of Covid-19. Despite the steady supply of vegetables, fruits, there were hardly any takers all these days. But on Monday, the eerie atmosphere of Bengaluru markets was lit-up with heavy rush of customers hoping to buy items in bulk quantities.

The sudden demand triggered a spike in the prices of vegetables, flowers and fruits. Despite this, people were seen shopping in large numbers.

Vegetables like beans, carrot, ladyfinger, brinjal and tomato prices shot up to Rs 15 from Rs 10 per kilogram. “Until last week these vegetables were sold between Rs 10 and 20 per half a kilo. But suddenly the prices have gone beyond Rs 30 to Rs 40 for the same quantity. The flowers and garlands prices have also shot up considerably. Traders rue that they have not been able to arrange for transport to get materials to the market,” explained Shantanu Biswas, a resident of JP Nagar.

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