Sri Lanka cancels two-day window for essential shopping during curfew

CURFEW CLAIMS: The strict coronavirus curfews which kept vehicles at home will keep general insurance claims in Sri Lanka down, Fitch Ratings said

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has cancelled a two-day window given to areas under curfew to shop for essential goods citing impracticality, with plans underway to employ a home delivery system, the COVID-19 prevention task force said.

“We have cancelled the two-day system for obvious reasons, but home delivery will start the way it did in the first lockdown,” a spokesman for the National Operation Centre for prevention of COVID-19 (NOCPOC) told EconomyNext.

“We will not be delivering medicines, but we’re discussing the feasibility of opening pharmacies at least once a week,” he said.

Meanwhile, Government Information Department Director General Nalaka Kaluwewa was quoted by NewsFirst saying that the circular published on October 27 was issued before the entire Western Province was put under coronavirus curfew.

“The implementation of the two-day system to re-open grocery stores and pharmacies are not practically applicable during the quarantine curfew in the Western Province,” Kaluwewa was quoted as saying.

A circular issued on October 27  states that stores and pharmacies in the Gampaha and Kalutara districts can re-open for business every Monday and Thursday from 08am to 10pm while those in Colombo and Kurunegala districts can open every Tuesday and Friday.

Sri Lanka extended the long-weekend curfew it imposed on October 30 in the Western Province and key areas elsewhere till November 9 in an attempt to contain the spread of COVID-19.

NOCPOC chief Army Commander Lt Gen General Shavendra Silva said today (020 that only people involved in essential services will be allowed to move about during the curfew with the resumption of food delivery systems. (Colombo/Nov02/2020)

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