Mumbai, June 15 : The beleaguered Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) – founded by J.R.D. Tata – on Tuesday urged Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray to allow them to reopen for business in Mumbai.
HRAWI President Sherry Bhatia said that though Mumbai has achieved a Level 2 status as per the latest norms, restaurants and bars in the city have still not been permitted to function as usual, though they are reeling under huge losses.
“The industry with 210,000 restaurants and around 10,500 hotels in the state is under a lockdown in Mumbai practically for 15 months since March 2020, barring a brief period of around 4-5 months, but with several restrictions. Besides no relief has been granted in terms of statutory charges that have led to closure of almost 40 percent of the establishments in the state,” Bhatia said.
Senior Vice President Pradeep Shetty said that the hospitality industry scrupulously adheres to all the SOPs and norms prescribed by the state, Centre and other agencies or local authorities and are the safest in terms of Covid-19 protocols as compared to any other industry.
“There was no known case or data of spread of the Covid-19 from restaurants making them among the safest type of businesses to function even during strict lockdown conditions,” Shetty said.
Bhatia and Shetty called upon Chief Minister Thackeray and Tourism Minister Aditya Thackeray to give due consideration to all these aspects and permit reopening of all eateries in the city to save the livelihoods of millions of owners, employees and others engaged in the business, and prevent them from closing down.