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Indian 'corona' shop gains selfie fame amid virus pandemic


Agence France-Presse

New Delhi  /  Mon, March 23, 2020  /  04:08 pm
Indian 'corona' shop gains selfie fame amid virus pandemic

This undated handout photo received by the courtesy of shopkeeper Pareed on March 18, 2020, shows a general view of a clothes store named 'Corona' by its owner since its opening 27 years ago, as it has become popular for its name amid concerns over the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, in Muvattupuzha in Indian southern state of Kerala. (AFP/File)

A clothing store named "Corona" in a small town in India has become a hotspot for selfies as the deadly new coronavirus pandemic sweeps the world.

The shop owner, who gave his name as Pareed, said people were flocking to his store in the southern state of Kerala, many take photos in front of the outdoor sign and ask him questions about the name.

"When I started the store 27 years ago, there was no internet," said Pareed, who owns the store in the small town of Muvattupuzha.

Locally the shop owner is known as "Corona Pareed."

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"I really liked the word 'corona' when I saw it in the dictionary. It had a reference to the sun, among other meanings," he told AFP.

The 60-year-old said his new found fame however has not boosted sales.

"Business in general is down since Kerala is quite strict about movement these days. So people are not exactly stepping out to shop for clothes," Pareed said.

Kerala authorities have closed schools, postponed government events and called for residents to avoid large gatherings.

Twenty-seven people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Kerala out of 151 cases across India, according to the national government.

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