E-commerce delivery staff fear cops, Covid as operations to resume on Friday

“Though we received nod from the police and purchased protective gear for delivery personnel, many of them are hesitant.

Published: 27th March 2020 06:29 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th March 2020 06:29 AM   |  A+A-

In the wake of an increasing number of Covid-19 cases, people have begun to depend on online delivery of essential items

Express News Service

CHENNAI: After much confusion, e-commerce firms delivering essentials are likely to resume operations from Friday after the chief minister and top police officials clarified that they would be allowed to operate. There is a catch however; many delivery staff are hesitant to work.

The one common reason cited by many delivery agents is that the police would beat them up if they are seen outdoors. Fuelling their fear are online videos that show police beating up lockdown violators. Also, many delivery staff told Express that they are scared of contracting the disease while delivering goods. 

“Though we received nod from the police and purchased protective gear for delivery personnel, many of them are hesitant. Hence, we will begin operations in North and Central Chennai. We will be able to expand only after more staff join,” a spokesperson from Dunzo told Express. 

Meanwhile, Grofers and Big Basket said they were working with local authorities for permissions and that they would begin operations soon. City Police Commissioner AK Viswanathan clarified that delivery agents of e-commerce firms won’t be stopped. “An order in this regard has already been delivered to all personnel on duty.”


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