As the country is under lockdown in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus with only essential services being allowed to operate by authorities, multiple online grocery providers such as BigBasket, SuprDaily, Grofers have temporarily halted their services. The move from the online grocery platforms comes at a time when all providers are witnessing a surge in orders, which even led to Big Basket’s app and website to crash.
Delivery executives are being stopped and questioned by the police or in some cases they are even beaten up by the police, said the online grocery platforms.
Flagging concerns on authorities shutting down warehouses, blocking trucks carrying supplies and dissuading delivery agents from moving around on the streets, the Retailers Association of India has urged all state governments to allow food and grocery stores, offline and online, to remain open during the lockdown period to curb panic buying of essential groceries.
“In some unfortunate incidents in Maharashtra, Andhra, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab and Gujarat, local police are going beyond the word of law, beating up employees and delivery staff of retailers. These employees are risking their lives to serve citizens. Let all grocery stores — within malls or outside, air-conditioned or non-air-conditioned, small or large, online or offline — stay open,” the association said in a statement.
It also requested that home deliveries be allowed to stop people from stepping out of homes.