Shillong: With the second day of the two-day COVID-19 vaccination drive at Iewduh market in Meghalaya’s capital Shillong drawing to a close on Thursday, the East Khasi Hills district administration and traditional heads are ensuring that all the shopkeepers and hawkers of the iconic market get themselves vaccinated.
The special vaccination drive at Iewduh market, also known as Bara Bazaar, aims to mainly cater to people who are involved in business activities in the area.
Speaking with EastMojo, M Kharlukhi, a Myntri (minister) of the Dorbar Hima Mylliem, said that they had witnessed a huge turnout on the first day on Wednesday. “To ensure that social distancing is maintained, we have given coupons allotting slots so that people don’t come and crowd here unnecessarily,” said Kharlukhi.
Dorbar Hima Mylliem is a traditional court of the Khasi community of Meghalaya.
A total of 245 people were vaccinated on Day 1 on Wednesday. On day 2, as many as 250 coupons were given but the exact figure was yet to be come out till the filing of this report.
Kharlukhi said that they will not force anyone to get the vaccine but are only making an appeal to the people.
Shop-owner Upender, who got his jab on Thursday and was waiting in the observation room, told this correspondent that he had got the vaccine administered so that he could protect himself and the others as well.
“I took the vaccine also because I want to be able to carry out my business because I am suffering [because of the pandemic and the lockdown],” said Upender.
Meanwhile, the district administration along with the Syiem (chief) of Hima Mylliem and the chief executive member (CEM) of Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) held discussions on reopening of shops at Iewduh.
Earlier, East Khasi Hills DC Isawanda Laloo had decided to allow only 15% of the shops to be opened on Friday. Of the 4,000 shops, only 1,222 shops will be allowed to open.
While 185 shops will be open in a day, only 184 hawkers will be allowed to carry out their business activities every day.