Rumours around another lockdown trigger panic buying spree in Uttar Pradesh

Rise in COVID-19 cases in Uttar Pradesh as well as in the country has started fuelling rumours of another round of lockdown in the coming days, leading to panic buying frenzy in the state

Photo courtesy- social media
Photo courtesy- social media
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IANS

Rise in COVID-19 cases in Uttar Pradesh as well as in the country has started fuelling rumours of another round of lockdown in the coming days, leading to panic buying frenzy in the state.

There was a very low footfall even after majority of the shops and shopping malls opened up on Monday. However, grocery stores, book stores and banks witnessed an unusually high turnout of customers.

"We had customers making bulk purchases and when we asked them, they said that there could be another round of the lockdown soon because Corona cases are rising," said Aniket Agarwal, who owns a grocery store in Mahanagar area, on Tuesday.

He said that people, apart from food grains, were buying dairy whiteners, baby foods, sanitary pads, diapers and ready-to-eat food in large quantities.

Immunity products like Chyavanprash are also being stocked up by consumers along with sanitizers and hand wash.


"Some of our old customers are placing orders on phone so that their orders are ready when they come to pick them up," he added.

The book and stationary stores in the state capital are also doing brisk business with students buying books and stationery in large quantities.

"Online classes are likely to continue for another two or three months and we need books to continue our studies," said Alisha Siddiqui, a student of class 9.

Apparently, having learnt from their previous experiences, most people do not want to be caught unaware this time.

"We are now storing up on essentials-even shampoos, toothpastes, hosiery items and snacks-so that another round of lockdown does not pose a problem. We know exactly what will be needed if there is a lockdown," said Shyamoli Roy, a homemaker.

Most banks have also witnessed a reasonably high turnout of customers.


"Many customers came for withdrawal of money and we had very few who deposited money. People want to keep cash in hand for no apparent reason," said Gaurav, a junior executive at a private bank.

The government spokesman, meanwhile, said that a special vigil was being maintained on the social media where some people were spreading rumours of another lockdown.

"We are fully prepared and there is no need for panic buying. Strict action will be taken against rumour-mongers," he said.

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