The women’s market or Ima Keithel as it is locally known reopened in Imphal on Monday after remaining closed for months due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
This came as a relief for women vendors whose businesses suffered immensely during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Manipur chief minister, N Biren Singh interacted with women entrepreneurs and vendors of the Ima market on the occasion.
The closing of the market for months had undoubtedly affected the livelihood of the women vendors, though the Manipur government had provided working capital loans to 817 women vendors in August last year to help resume their vending activities after the nationwide Covid-19 lockdown was lifted.
The chief minister said that keeping the Ima market closed during the pandemic has helped in curbing the transmission of the novel coronavirus.
He also thanked all the women vendors for cooperating with the government during the pandemic.
“Extremely glad to re-open Ima Keithel, Imphal from today with COVID situation significantly improving. The timely closure of Ima Keithel from March 21, 2020, helped control the spread of the pandemic up to a large extent. Thanks to all the Imas for their unstinting support & cooperation,” N Biren Singh tweeted.
Extremely glad to re-open Ima Keithel, Imphal from today with COVID situation significantly improving. Timely closure of Ima Keithel from March 21, 2020 helped control spread of the pandemic up to a large extent. Thanks to all the Imas for their unstinting support & cooperation. pic.twitter.com/p4o6cI6xqO
— N.Biren Singh (@NBirenSingh) February 15, 2021
The state government is in the process of setting up 16 such Ima markets in different districts across Manipur.
Meanwhile, seven newly established women’s markets have begun functioning in the hill districts of the state.