Though the newspaper hawkers in Tangla town of Assam’s Udalguri resumed their usual daily newspaper delivery activities, baseless rumours of newspapers carrying coronavirus seem to be ruling the minds of some sections of readers.

Despite government orders and clarifications from health officials, many regular customers have avoided newspapers leading to the dip in sales of newspapers.

“We were worried about our career as the lockdown had not only hit the print publication but we were the worst sufferer, I even started to look for other avenues,” rued Babool Sarma, a hawker of the town.

“We deliver the copies of daily newspapers at people’s doorsteps but had decided to suspend newspaper distribution on March 31 as there was a dip in sales and many reported difficulties including ill-treatment to hawkers,” said Subir Roy another hawker.

While echoing similar concerns, hawlers Raju Joarder and Krishna Roy appealed to the hawkers to take self-precautionary measures like social distancing while performing their job and exhorted newspaper readers across the State to clear the outstanding dues to ensure that the hawkers can continue their job properly.

Shajid Khan

Shajid Khan is Northeast Now Correspondent in Udalguri. He can be reached at: itsshajidkhan@gmail.com