The entire world is currently in the grip of coronavirus. The number of cases across the globe are spiking every day, and India is currently one of the worst-affected countries.
However, despite the rapidly increasing number of cases, shopping malls, hotels, markets and places of worship opened up on June 8 under ‘Unlock 1.0’ – the first phase of lifting the lockdown in the country almost after three months. The Central government has issued certain guidelines for people to follow while visiting such places.
We decided to visit one such shopping mall in the national capital to find that several precautionary measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of the staff as well as customers who choose to venture out. Here’s what we found:
Workers in protective gear at the entrance of Select CityWalk mall, armed with infrared thermometers, check the body temperature of every passenger in the vehicle. They also register the details of the driver before allowing access to the premises.
The parking token.
Prior to entering the building, every individual has to pass through a sanitisation enclosure followed by another round of temperature checks.
Hallways of the mall are being monitored by personnel in PPE.
Every store has put up vertical banners with necessary instructions for visitors before they enter the store.
The escalators inside the mall have been neatly marked with red crosses. Individuals are expected to stand on the blank stairs to practice effective social distancing.
Sensor taps have been disabled in order to maintain hygiene.
The restrooms are only functional for using the toilet, everything else has been disabled in order to avoid a crowd forming.
Touch free sanitiser stations have been installed all around the mall.
Seating arrangements around the food court. Only two people can sit at a table at a time and the tables have been separated to allow for a safe distance.
A good number of stores are still shut, including several restaurants and many big franchises.
Mannequins sporting face masks outside a store.
Even though lifts don’t seem to be an ideal place to practice distancing, an effort has been made: four individuals are allowed in a lift at a time with each individual occupying a corner.
The management team of Select CityWalk has set up a sanitisation team with sanitary dispensers at the entry parking gate to clean car tires.
Verda Subzwari is a journalism student at AJK Mass Communication and Research Center, Jamia Millia Islamia and Anusuya Chakraborty has majored in English from the same university.
All photos taken by the authors