New Delhi: Retail shops in the biggest market in Noida, the Sector 18 ‘Atta’ market, will start opening from Thursday on an odd-even basis after two long months of COVID-19 lockdown. Also Read - Coronavirus in Gurugram: Private Hospitals to Face Action if Patients Refused Treatment

The market association announced on Wednesday that adhering to the social-distancing norms, only 50 per cent of the shops will open in a single day so that neighbouring outlets are not open at the same time. Moreover, customers who come without face mask won’t be sold any item, the association said. Also Read - Coronavirus in Delhi: No COVID-19 Suspect Can be Denied Admission Into Any Hospital, Kejriwal Govt Issues Order

Explaining further, Sector 18 Market Association President Sushil Jain said that shops with even address numbers (example, 2, 28, 30) will operate on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Shops with odd address numbers (example 1, 13, 31) will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Also Read - Come Out of Illusion, Delhi is in Community Transmission Stage, Says Ex-ICMR chief

Shop owners must ensure that they receive all their deliveries on the designated days only. The market will remain closed on Sundays for sanitization.

Shop owners have been told to strictly follow lockdown rules and ensure closure well in time so that staff can reach home by 7 PM, as directed by the district administration. The Home Ministry has already imposed a strict curfew from 7 PM to 7 AM across the nation.

Regarding customers, the association said that they must sanitise their hands before entering the shop and also while exiting. ‘No mask, no goods’ – customers without a mask will not be allowed to enter the premises and only a limited number of customers will be allowed inside at a time. They must maintain a minimum distance of 2 metres between them, the Sector 18 president said.

The customers have also been requested to place their orders over the phone or through email well in advance, so that shops can keep the orders ready and reduce person-to-person contact as much as possible, he added.

The administration earlier allowed reopening of restaurants and sweets shops too but permitted only home delivery and takeaways, while prohibiting dine-in.

Sector 18 has around 100 restaurants and fast food outlets.

With PTI inputs