Nagpur: Grocers more digitally adept than their counterparts have taken to social media to beat the 1pm deadline enforced for the first time on Tuesday. Outlet owners are now suggesting their customers to place orders through WhatsApp and in broadcast groups for doorstep deliveries or pick-ups to avoid crowding, and for better compliance of the restrictive norms.
Vishal Kinkar, an experienced manager at a mega mart retail shop in Sakkardara Chowk, observed that the panic buying of groceries and other essentials had already taken place by March 14, after which the milder weekend restrictions were replaced by stricter, extended ones.
It was not surprising for him that his outlet remained largely empty, even when the time limit of 1pm was being enforced. “We are delivering essential daily need items online, rotating staffers to maintain Covid distancing and also taking other precautionary measures,” he said.
“We have broadcast groups where the orders are placed and the items are delivered at home,” Kinkar added.
Lalit Jumani, whose family owns a popular grocery shop at Mahal, said many of his customers were placing orders through WhatsApp. “We are keeping the orders packed and ready for the customers to pick up and leave immediately,” he said.
“Even if the customers arrive at the last moment before closing the shop, they would not return empty-handed as their materials would be ready to be taken away,” he added.