Local units feel the pinch, fear delay in revival

There are concerns in Mysuru that manufacturing and industrial units could feel the brunt of the second wave of COVID-19.   | Photo Credit: M.A. SRIRAM

The second wave of COVID-19 has affected industrial activity in Mysuru with reports of minor hiccups affecting production.

The spectre of prolonged lockdown and its cascading impact on the industries is worrying the stakeholders though industrial activity is not expected to screech to a halt like last year.

There are about 100 major and medium enterprises apart from around 20,000 small-scale units in the district, with most engaged in manufacturing. The industrial sector suffered a massive slow down during the lockdown which came into effect from March 25 last year.

A little more than an year later the sector is beginning to see a similar trend with the rise in CO”VID-19 cases. Supply and transportation of raw materials from Maharasthra has been affected and we are beginning to feel the pinch’’, said Suresh Kumar Jain, Secretary, Mysuru Industries Association.

However, he pointed out that the transportation of raw materials was only being delayed and it has not stopped unlike last year. But in case the situation further worsens and a lockdown is resorted to as a last resort in the weeks ahead, then the industrial activity will go into a tailspin once again.

A view endorsed by A.S. Satish, President, Mysuru Chamber of Commerce and Industries (MCCI). He said there is no national lockdown like last year but local lockdowns in Maharashtra and Mumbai and weekend lockdowns in the State will have a negative bearing.

The total lockdown last year ensured that the migrant workers returned to their respective home States leaving the local units in the lurch. Subsequently, there was a graded unlocking and many of the workers did return but the supply chain had been badly hit which impacted the manufacturing sector.

It took more than 6 months after the graded unlocking for the industries to attain 50 per cent of their installed capacity. Much of it was due to issues that were dovetailed with the overall pandemic situation in the country and across the globe. Now a similar trend is being observed as bulk of the components for auto industry manufactured in the ancillary units in Mysuru finds its way to Maharasthra which is shut.

Meanwhile, the State government has issued a notification for closure of factories sparing units that are considered essential. These include food and packaging units, pharmaceuticals etc though engineering and manufacturing units will remain shut during the weekend lockdown starting April 24.

Mr. Satish said bulk of the industries in Mysuru are general engineering and manufacturing units and do not qualify as essential under the present circumstances. Hence there will be a lockdown during the weekends which will further delay or hamper the revival of the manufacturing units.

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Printable version | May 10, 2021 5:21:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/local-units-feel-the-pinch-fear-delay-in-revival/article34395419.ece

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