Thiruvananthapuram Corporation has cancelled the shopping mall license of Ramachandran and Pothys after these malls violated physical distancing norms and scores of their employees contracted the novel coronavirus.
"These stores had become a major reason for the increase in the spread of COVID-19. They were asked to follow the COVID 19 protocol many times. They neglected it. More than 100 staff of Ramachandran have tested positive. Similar incidents were reported from Pothys also. Pothys was also warned by the corporation many times. The licences of these centers were cancelled until further notice," Thiruvananthapuram mayor K Sreekumar stated on his Facebook page.
Ramachandran, one of the oldest enterprises in the city is located at Attakumangara. The multi-storeyed complex includes a hypermarket, a food court and sells textiles, home decor, cutlery, and furniture.
Pothys, a multi-storeyed textile store, is located near Ayurveda College junction. Though Pothys had made hand washing and hand sanitising compulsory before entering the mall, physical distancing was not followed. The mall also checked the temperature of visitors at the time of entry.
A similar issue was reported at Ramachandran as well, with customers failing to follow physical distancing while shopping. Mall authorities hadn't arranged any facilities to ensure physical distancing.
On Saturday District Collector Navjot Khosa released a list of places where people who tested positive visited or worked.This included Pothys, Ramachandrans and 22 other places. There were bakeries, banks, medical shops, electrical shops, markets, supermarkets etc on the list.
Last week, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had also said that strict action will be taken against traders who breached protocol and caused a huge spread. "I am not specifically mentioning any particular place. But all the traders who were responsible for this will be booked under law," CM said.