E-commerce, food delivery cos ask for 24/7 operation in lockdown
E-commerce-based food delivery platforms and the restaurants attached to the platform submitted a letter in this regard to the cabinet division on Sunday
As the Covid-19 situation is deteriorating drastically, various e-commerce, food delivery companies, restaurants and grocery shops have requested the government that they would like to operate their delivery activities round the clock during the lockdown starting from 14 April so that they can contribute to curbing the spread of the virus by delivering foods and daily necessities at the customers' doorstep.
E-commerce-based food delivery platforms and the restaurants attached to the platform submitted a letter in this regard to the cabinet division on Sunday.
The letter reads that food delivery and e-commerce companies, restaurant owners, officials, employees and delivery workers are risking their lives to deliver goods to people's homes during the epidemic. Their combined efforts are playing an important role in preventing the spread of Covid-19.
However, due to the second wave of Covid-19 infection, possible public holidays and lockdowns will result in the closure of hotels and restaurants and a decline in sales in the coming month of Ramadan, which will severely affect those involved in this sector.
The letter further states that in such a situation, delivery arrangements through hotels or restaurants, grocery shops, etc through their own or e-commerce or online platforms should be exempted from general holidays or lockdowns considering those as emergency services.
The letter said the government-directed Food and Grocery Home Delivery Service would be followed and necessary training will be provided to the delivery staff.
The letter further demanded that the officers, employees and online staff of restaurants engaged in emergency services be recognized as Covid-19 frontline activists. Besides, they need full-time assistance from law enforcement agencies to perform delivery activities smoothly without any hazard.
At the same time, the letter also demanded financial incentives to restaurants and associated sectors and food and financial assistance to low-income and daily wage dependent employees and online delivery workers who lost their jobs due to the lockdown.
They also demanded that hotels and restaurants, grocery stores, warehouses, etc should be kept open on a takeaway basis and home delivery should be continued.