Jammu and Kashmir: Ahead of Eid, bakers resume business after undergoing coronavirus tests, training

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India May 22, 2020, 11.37 PM(IST) Reported By: Ieshan Bashir Wani

Bakeries in Jammu and Kashmir Photograph:( WION )

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Bakery forms an essential part of Eid festivities and due to the lockdown, the administration has asked bakers to provide home delivery to local people, ensuring hygiene. 

The coronavirus pandemic has changed how we live and it definitely has also changed how we celebrate our festivals. Days ahead of the Islamic festival of Eid, the administration in Jammu and Kashmir is training bakers for personal safety, production, and distribution to stop any chances of coronavirus transmission. 

Bakery forms an essential part of Eid festivities and due to the lockdown, the administration has asked bakers to provide home delivery to local people, ensuring hygiene. 

Several bakers in Srinagar have already gone for COVID-19 testing and it is only after that, that they have been allowed to start their factories. Around 500 bakers in Srinagar city have been trained and a certificate has also been issued to build confidence between a buyer and a seller. 

"We have to adapt to this (COVID) new reality. We are training 10 thousand service providers in total. We started from the bakery and after training, a certificate is provided to them which they display at their shop, increasing trust in the customer," Deputy Commissioner of Police, Srinagar, Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, told WION. 

The bakery factories in Srinagar are buzzing again after two month-plus of a lull. The fresh aroma of the bakery has started to come out again and bakers are preparing to dispatch vehicles for home delivery. 

Bakeries in Jammu and Kashmir

At a factory on the outskirts of Srinagar, bakers are making biscuits, cakes, and other sweets, wearing a PPE suit and masks. The owner says they (bakers) have no contact with the outside world as part of the precaution to curb the spread of COVID-19. 

"We try to maintain distance. Usually, there would be dozens but now there are few working here. The quantity has also fallen due to the pandemic," says Mukhtar Ahmad, a head baker at Hattrick foods. 

This year, the festival of Eid is expected to be a lowkey affair around the globe. Muslims in India will celebrate the festival indoor owing to the lockdown imposed in mid-March to contain the spread of COVID. 

"We have to rope in extra labor even when we had 300 people working just ahead of Eid. Right now, I just have 18 people working which tells you about the shift," says Babar Chowdhary, managing director Hattrick foods adding that PPE suits and gloves have become an essential part of bakery now.