Business owners of Newroad have taken to the streets demanding that the government should allow them to operate their shops and businesses safely after Nepal Police today shut down shops across Kathmandu valley for opening up in defiance of the ongoing lockdown.

On Wednesday, they participated in the demonstration by carrying ply cards with various slogans at New Road, Ranjana Galli and Dharmapathal.

The police forced people to shut down their retail and wholesale shops in Thamel, New Road, New Baneshwor and Koteshwor, requesting people to strictly follow lockdown rules in force till June 14.

President of the Nepal National Traders Federation, Naresh Katwal, said business activities had resumed gradually after consulting with the District Administration Office, Kathmandu.

“Businesses cannot remain shut forever. Moreover, we had also consulted the DAO before opening markets,” he said, adding that the government and police should allow resumption of businesses.

The private sector has been constantly putting pressure on the government to ease lockdown measures that prevent opening of businesses, mobility and transportation services.

Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry had requested the government to review its decision to extend the lockdown in its current form, stating that businesses were bound to collapse under the current lockdown modality.

Earlier, NNTF had decided to open shops and other businesses across the country till 11:00 am daily from June 5 by adopting necessary precautionary measures against COVID-19 stating that the government had provided no alternative to business owners.