Breaking News
0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Businesses in India's richest state choke under new COVID-19 curbs

CoronavirusApr 12, 2021 11:11AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
2/2 © Reuters. A health worker checks a passenger's temperature and pulse at a railway station platform amidst the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Mumbai 2/2

By Shilpa Jamkhandikar and Abhirup Roy

MUMBAI (Reuters) - Retailers, restaurants and theatres in India's richest state are reeling under the impact of harsh restrictions imposed last week by authorities scrambling to curb a resurgence in COVID-19 cases.

The western state of Maharashtra, home to India's financial capital Mumbai, has been the worst hit in the pandemic, accounting for about a quarter of the country's 13.5 million case load.

Last week, the local government shut down restaurants, bars, gyms, theatres and non-essential stores in a blow to businesses that had barely recovered from the nationwide lockdown last year.

After closing for more than eight months, theatres in Maharashtra reopened in November despite sporadic Bollywood releases and capacity restrictions.

But with the new surge in cases and the spectre of more curbs, theatre owners say they may never recover from the losses and be forced to shut down.

"It's the final nail in the coffin," said Sharad Doshi, vice-president of the Cinema Owners and Exhibitors Association of India. "We have no choice but to perish."

Doshi and other business owners have called on the government provide support through tax waivers and subsidies on rent to prevent the crisis from worsening.

India reported 168,912 new infections on Monday, inching past Brazil, with a total of 13.53 million cases, data compiled by Reuters shows. India is now the second-most affected country after the United States that is grappling with 31.2 million cases.

With barely 4% of more than 1.3 billion people in India estimated to have been vaccinated, experts say the COVID crisis in the country could have a long way to go.

STORES CLOSURES, JOB LOSSES

Maharashtra, one of India's most urbanised and industrialised states, accounts for nearly 15% of the country's gross domestic product and is crucial for its economic recovery.

The Confederation Of All India Traders estimated traders in Maharashtra would lose about 1 trillion rupees ($13.34 billion) during a month-long lockdown.

The state has also suffered the most deaths in India's COVID-19 outbreak, and as cases continue to surge, sources said authorities were considering shutting down some industries and restricting public transport.

"One month (of lockdown) is equivalent to about $5 billion of revenue for retailers from just Maharashtra," Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO of the Retailers Association of India, told Reuters. "We are talking about 1.2 million stores and 5 million jobs."

Rajagopalan said store shutdowns will hit sectors such as manufacturing, distribution and banking and have a snowball effect on the economy.

Restaurants and bars in Maharashtra had already felt the pinch as the state mandated a daily curfew after 8pm - prime time for eateries to rake in revenues - before shuttering them completely last week.

Riyaaz Amlani, who runs nearly 60 popular restaurants, including SOCIAL, across 15 cities in India, said the shutdown would lead to more job losses.

Amlani said many restaurants took loans to re-start their businesses after burning capital during the lockdown last year and would now have to bear interest costs on top of fixed costs.

"So there is a serious crisis looming," he said.

($1 = 74.9400 Indian rupees)

Businesses in India's richest state choke under new COVID-19 curbs
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind: 

  • Enrich the conversation
  • Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
  • Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
  •  Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
  • Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
  • Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Comments (1)
danny Levine
danny Levine Apr 12, 2021 10:26AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
don't comply with the lockdowns
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email