Delhi

There is no respite, say Haryana hoteliers

A view of a five-star hotel in Gurugram.

A view of a five-star hotel in Gurugram.   | Photo Credit: Ashok Kumar

They allege that appeals to CM Manohar Lal for assistance have gone unanswered

Hit hard by the COVID-19-induced lockdown, hoteliers in Haryana have alleged that there is “no breather” from the State and central governments to the industry and they may be forced to switch their business “as a last resort” in case the situation prevailed for long.

Speaking to The Hindu, Hotel and Restaurant Association of Haryana president Colonel (Retd.) Manbeer Choudhary said they had given four representations to the Chief Minister Manohar Lal but “there is no respite”.

He said the level of frustration among the hoteliers was so “high” that a few of them were even mulling selling off their properties or seeking the Change of Land Use (CLU) to switch business. “In Haryana, we have the CLU system and presently we have licences for running hotels. But if we want to change the activity, we need the permission from the government,” said Mr. Choudhary. He added a few of the hoteliers in Gurugram were willing to open their premises for PG accommodation to make up for the losses, but he had advised them against it as it was illegal.

Mr. Choudhary, however, added he had asked the hoteliers to wait till June 1 as the things were likely to improve.

He said that “neither the State nor the Centre had come to their help”, but the Reserve Bank of India had gone a “good job” by deferring the EMIs for the industry as such. Mr. Choudhary added the hoteliers were not seeking any “cash transfers”, but they stood at “cross roads” and needed “support”.

He said the national association of the hotel industry too had met the union leaders in this regard.

Mr. Choudhary said the government could help the hotel industry by waving off the fixed electricity load charges for six months since there was no business and reducing the property tax charges and the Goods and Services Tax rate. “If the GST is reduced, the consumer will spend more,” said Mr. Choudhary. In a fresh representation to the Chief Minister on Thursday, the association has demanded that hotels be allowed to resume operations from June 1.

‘Steps not implemented’

He rued that the announcements made by the government were also not implemented on the ground. “The 25% waiver announced on fixed electricity charges is still not implemented. I got an electricity bill of ₹18 lakh for my hotel during lockdown and the department asked me to deposit the complete bill,” said Mr. Choudhary.

He also questioned the rationale behind opening domestic flights, but not allowing hotel bookings. “They talk about bringing industry from China, but they fail to handle even the existing industry. The government is least concerned about the ground realities,” alleged Mr. Choudhary, without mincing any words.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 4:29:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/there-is-no-respite-say-haryana-hoteliers/article31654498.ece

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