March 25, 2020 1:28:08 pm
As India entered into its first day of the 21-day lockdown announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for containing the spread of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) disease, several e-commerce businesses have been severely hit.
More than 500 people have tested positive for coronavirus in India with 10 deaths.
While many business enterprises have had to shut down operations, some had to cut down the active workforce employed to comply with the government orders.
Whatever the case from company to company may be, the latest move is expected to sharply affect the cash flow of all the companies.
We take a look at all the key e-commcerce companies which have had to shut down operations in wake of the 21-day nationwide lockdown.
E-commerce giant Flipkart, which is owned by US retail behemoth Walmart, on Wednesday has announced that it is suspending its operations temporarily.
“Consequent to the order issued on March 24 by the Ministry of Home Affairs announcing a 21-day lockdown across India to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus causing Covid-19, we are temporarily suspending our services,” the e-commerce company said in a blogpost adding that “we will be back to serve you as soon as possible”.
Amazon India, another e-commerce giant, on Tuesday, had announced that it has temporarily stopped taking orders and disabled shipment of low-priority products. The move by the company was mainly because it wanted to focus on the deliveries of essential items such as household staples, hygiene and other high-priority products.
For the orders already placed, the customers received a message from the company saying, “There is increased demand for high priority products as customers stay home to comply with social distancing. Additionally, several local and regional lockdowns are impacting our capability to deliver in time. This has resulted in longer than usual time to deliver your order. We request your patience as our team is working on serving customers in these challenging times.”
Online grocery platform Grofers too is has been facing issues with its warehouse in Faridabad, Haryana being shut down. Grofers founder Albinder Dhindsa on Tuesday tweeted out his concern about the surge in demand and the lockdown.
Our @grofers warehouse in Faridabad was closed by local law enforcement today.While we understand they are doing their duty, essential items will be denied to 20,000+ households in Faridabad and Delhi every day. We need help in sorting this out. @Mcf_Faridabad @ArvindKejriwal
— Albinder Dhindsa (@albinder) March 24, 2020
Other key e-commerce firms, including Amazon India and Milkbasket, have been facing disruption in deliveries of even essential products to their customers.
This, despite the fact that the government, in its notification, has allowed delivery of all essential goods including food, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment through e-commerce.
Some e-commerce firms are also urging the government to expand the scope of essential products beyond food items and medicines to include other products, like cable and routers that may be required for customers who are working from home.
– With PTI inputs
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