Eid shopping in full swing; traders demand removal of encroachment, increase security

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enewspaper.com.pk/Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah

RAWALPINDI, (APP): Sparkling illuminations around shopping centers, overcrowded roads and side lanes, and heavy rush in shopping areas were seen in the city as Eid shopping was underway in full swing.

Despite inflation, there was no decline in Eid shopping in the city like a heavy rush in major shopping centers was witnessed. Just drive or walk down to, Moti Bazaar, Chan Bazar, Purana Qilla, Kartar Pura, Benazir Bhutto Road, and other areas.

The shops were full of customers, primarily women and children, continuing until Sehri. The city administration, with departments concerned and traffic police in collaboration with the shopkeepers association, have set up special complaint centers in major shopping areas in the city to register complaints about thefts or pick-pocketing.

During visits to various shopping areas of the city, an unusual rush of buyers was seen; Children’s items were in excessive demand because every family, whatever its financial position, prefers to purchase something for their young ones.

Traders Association President Sharjeel Mir said it was a trend in our society that people usually shop more during Ramzan for Eid-ul-Fitr. He added that the improved law and order situation has also reinforced shopping sprees this year.

However, he demanded that the Municipal Corporation Rawalpindi (MCR) launch a cohesive operation against encroachments that created hurdles in the smooth traffic flow. President of Moti Bazaar Chaudary Muhammad Iqbal said that it had become more challenging to move on roads as Eid shopping has been picked up.

He said traders and commuters, especially women, were facing great difficulties during routine shopping, and it had doubled over on celebratory shopping. Iqbal noted that wrong car parking was standard even in traffic wardens, causing traffic jams and accidents.

Meanwhile, President of Raja Bazaar Union Shahid Ghafoor Paracha urged the Rawalpindi district administration to increase security around all market areas as Eid shopping was gaining momentum with each passing day.

Expressing dissatisfaction over the security arrangements made for shopping areas, he said the deployment of police personnel was insufficient as compared to the great hustle and bustle of visitors there. Paracha said there should be police officers in plain clothes present in vulnerable areas and ready to converge on a single whistle in case of an emergency.

Besides, he said many beggars apparently seek alms but were also involved in criminal activities like pick-pocketing and snatching different items from the people visiting the markets. The president also asked the quarters concerned to beef up the security of city markets, especially during nighttime.

When contacted, City Police Officer (CPO) Umer Saeed Malik assured us that foolproof security arrangements were being made to give a special cover to shopping areas so that customers and traders could feel a sense of security.

He said that traffic police had also deputed wardens in all city shopping centers for the smooth traffic flow.

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