ISLAMABAD-Like rest of the world, novel cororanvirus badly impacted the variety of life and stretched a deserted look in busy markets and shopping centres of the twin cities Islamabad and Rawalpindi, said an aged shopkeeper sitting on footpath and waiting for his customers.

He said COVID-19 had changed the entire lifestyle of the residents of federal capital and now they were not interested to visit markets as per previous routine. Talking to APP, he stated that markets were deserted and businesses were suffering due to lockdown as sellers were waiting for the customers but online shopping trend emerged as new normal during the contagion. Saad Malik, owner of a cloth shop at F-10 Markaz said he had never experienced such idleness while working in the shop. Daily dozens of clients used to visit the shop and their daily earnings were in thousands.

“‘Now, during week days customers don’t come at all, sometimes we pretend to be customers as we certainty miss our business and its hustle bustle,” he mentioned.

Ghulam Ali, a Careem driver said he used to take more than 15 rides before this pandemic hit the world, but now even after offices have resumed work to some extent, he could only manage to take three to four rides in a day and is surely worried about his monthly expenses. As many of the people did not return to capital from their hometowns, moreover, due to coronavirus spread, tourist resorts were not functioning fully, said Ahmed Durrani, a businessman.

Tahir Mustafa, a seller of inflated balloons and toys said that he was already facing tough condition but after COVID-19, he was living through hell as he earned nothing in a day.

Amna Qaiser, a house wife said markets were closed due to pandemic which was a good and wise step of government but on weekends, market should be opened again so people could buy necessary items before Eid.

Another senior resident Maleeha Tariq said COVID-19 had affected the whole world, people had lost their jobs as private sectors had terminated many of their employees.