After the state government imposed stringent norms, including daytime norms, night curfews and weekend lockdowns to curb in the second wave of Covid-19, protests have broken out in Mumbai and other parts of the state.
Hotel and hospitality industry association, including the FHRAI, HRAWI, NRAI, and AHAR, together with other local bodies, organized a protest titled #MissionRoziRoti highlighting their fight for survival. Lakhs of employees from several outlets took part in the protests appealing to the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government to permit their businesses while adhering to SOPs or they would shut down permanently.
HRAWI's Sherry Bhatia noted that most establishments have increasing debts, threats of insolvency and millions of job losses. Bhatia, along with FHRAI's Pradeep Shetty, further added that in the past year, nearly a third of all establishments in the country have shut down while another 20 per cent did not fully open even once the lockdown was lifted while the remaining are running despite huge losses.
Suman Agarwal, Congress state General Secretary, urged the CM Uddhav Thackeray to reduce the current norms to weekend lockdown while letting businesses function normally during the weekdays. Likewise, BJP leader Raj Purohit also led a protest again the government, wielding the plight of small businesses. He further issued a warning to the government that if a decision favouring the business community is not made by Saturday, shops shall open from 9 AM to 4 PM on Monday, defying government norms. He, too, called upon the government to allow businesses to function normally in the day while keeping the night curfews intact.
Meanwhile, Thackeray had met a delegation of retail traders and businesses in Mumbai on Wednesday and persuaded them to defer the agitation planned for later this week for two days.