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AHAR expresses displeasure with CM about restrictions on restaurants

AHAR (Indian Hotel and Restaurant Association), the former body of the industry, expressed its strong displeasure with the government-issued guidelines to ease restrictions on almost all outlets except restaurants.

This comes at a time when the hotel and restaurant industry is in a precarious position due to the lockdown caused by the pandemic.

To express displeasure, AHAR wrote to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray explaining that operations appeared to be locked until 4 p.m. throughout the week, including weekends. When you add other overheads like salaries, rent, and operating expenses, hardly any money is made. In contrast, roadside food vendors do their business until midnight, in complete violation of the Supreme Court order not to cook food outside.

Shivanand Shetty, President of AHAR, said: “We feel betrayed after having regular meetings with the state government and following all the SOPs imposed by the authorities. Decisions about relaxation are to be made taking into account the business model and after consultation with the respective industry representatives. What we are seeing, however, are purely discriminatory guidelines issued without any due diligence, which is damaging our image as an industry. The situation is different in other states, where guidelines have been relaxed and some states have even announced aid packages for the industry. We hope that CM will comply with our request and extend the opening times of the restaurants to 11 pm at the earliest. „

Using an analogy between restaurant and air travel, the letter states that an average transit time is an hour and a half during which people remove their masks to enjoy their food in a fully occupied, pressurized seating environment. Why are restaurants selected?