Due to insecurity and the Taliban’s threat most shops and businesses in Kunduz city, the center of Kunduz province, close at sunset each day.
Residents of the city said that if they need anything after sunset they have to search for a shop that’s open. Jabar is a guard at one shop in the city and he says that his responsibilities have increased following this latest move to close shops early. “Now its war and people are afraid of war. By hearing the sounds of bomb blasts they go home. In the past people used to stay out till late,” he said.
Abdul Wadood, a rickshaw driver, meanwhile says business is bad for him as he is forced to roam empty streets in Kunduz city at night in a bid to make a living. “I am a rickshaw driver and in the past three days that fighting has started there is no work” he said. He added that in the past he used to work untill 9:00 to 10:00 pm each night.
“Everyone was busy with his work, but after these rumors about war, now as you see there is no one in the city in the early evening,” said Mohammad Azizi, a resident of Kunduz city.
“We work from dawn to 6:00 or 7:00 pm in the evening,” said Mohammad Asif, a butcher in Kunduz city.
The provincial police chief, Mohammad Qasim Jangal Bagh, meanwhile said that security forces are trying to put an end to the concerns of people about their safety.
“The shops are closed, because there is fighting on the outskirts of Kabul city and there is firing of heavy weapons that scare them. Otherwise, I assure residents of the city that the entire city is under the Afghan security forces’ control,” he added.
During the fall of Kunduz city to the Taliban last year, many shopkeepers and traders incurred huge losses as their business stayed shut for weeks.