Today's Paper

Delivery issues add to woes for homebound

Reports have emerged of delivery persons being assaulted.File photo

Reports have emerged of delivery persons being assaulted.File photo  

Firms worried over safety of agents

Many e-commerce firms were forced to suspend deliveries to their customers in major cities across the country on Wednesday with local authorities unable to ensure the safety of delivery persons on the first day of the 21-day nationwide lockdown.

Angry customers vented their anger on social media even as police services scrambled to put in place a system where delivery persons for online vendors were able to go about their jobs unmolested.

“The key challenge in the field is that sometimes our delivery partners are getting stopped by the police, and some of them have even got beaten up by the police for no fault of theirs,” online grocer BigBasket said in a statement.

“It will help to have better coordination between the Centre and State, and between the State and local police, to ensure that our delivery vans and bikes don’t get stopped by the police,” the firm added.

Late on Wednesday, the e-commerce firm put out a statement that they were now operational in Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Bhopal, Coimbatore, Indore, Mumbai, Mysuru, Noida, Surat and Vadodara. However, services remained suspended in Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Gurugram, Ludhiana, Pune, Vizag, Hyderabad and Vijayawada.

Earlier, e-commerce major Flipkart announced that it had suspended its services, while rival Amazon India halted orders for non-essential products. Gurugram-headquartered Snapdeal also said it was working towards completing delivery of essential goods.

“We are an essential service and our delivery persons must be allowed to perform their duty,” Shan Kadavil, CEO & Co-founder, FreshtoHome, said in a statement. “The directive from the top is clear but the implementation on the ground level is different.”

Recommended for you