CHENNAI: In a decision that may come as a relief for 17 industrial estates in Chennai, the government has allowed them to resume operations from Monday with 25 per cent workforce. However, the industries have been told not to engage workers from containment zones.
An official statement added that the units must strictly follow safety precautions like screening employees and sanitising premises twice a day and toilets every two hours. Employees who are above 55 have been advised not to come for work.Though the permission comes as a major relief, lack of workforce will be a major hinderance as a lot of migrant workers have left for their homes, industrialists said.
"For now, we will be able to manage. But in a couple of months, when at least 50 per cent of the workers are allowed, we will be left scrambling for the workers. As job opportunities won’t be bright for migrant workers in their home States, we are hopeful that they will return in a couple of months," said S Anburajan, president, Tamil Nadu Small and Tiny Industries Association.
Concurring this, AN Sujeesh, president, Ambattur Industrial Estate Manufacturing Association, said the government must come out with a clear policy as to how these workers can return. "Only when we go to work tomorrow, will we know how many people actually turn up. The lack of public transport will be a major issue," he said. Sujeesh added.
"There will be less sales and we will need more money to pay existing loans. The 'stimulus' package which the government announced is only additional borrowing. There is no additional capacity build up. Since it will take sometime for people to gather confidence to go out and spend, the government must announce a real stimulus package that will help the industries survive," he concluded.