The state government is discussing the possibility of reopening malls subject to some conditions, Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa said Tuesday, noting that the benefit of declining Covid-19 case numbers should be passed onto citizens.
“We are discussing how we can give concessions to malls with some conditions. No final decision has been taken yet,” Yediyurappa told reporters. “We’re happy that Covid is reducing and its benefit should reach the common man and help those in distress. In that direction, we will make a decision soon,” he said.
Earlier in the day, an association of malls met Yediyurappa and petitioned him to allow resumption of their business for 12 hours a day. “We told the CM that operating from 9 am to 6 pm won’t work. We asked for the business hours to be set from 9 am to 9 pm. We said we will comply with whatever measures necessary, including Covid-19 protocols,” Garuda Mall general manager Nandeesh MR, who represents the association, said.
The state government has refrained from allowing malls and such air-conditioned shopping complexes to open under the first two phases of Unlock. With Unlock 2.0 ending July 5, Yediyurappa is expected to hold a meeting with ministers and officials to finalize Unlock 3.0, which is likely to be more liberal.