Trade and industry organisations in Karnataka are angry at the unilateral lockdown imposed by the government from yesterday without taking them into confidence, an official said yesterday.
“The lockdown is likely to paralyse the state economy and severely impact industrial production and hamper attempts to restore normalcy,” Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI) president C R Janardhan said.
He said the industrial sector contributes 26% of the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) which will be affected by the lockdown as industries will be closed, impacting production, state GST collections and hitting jobs.
According to Janardhan, Bengaluru alone contributes 70% of the GSDP. The city is under a complete lockdown with minimal exceptions from 8pm yesterday until July 22.
“Many industries in Bengaluru especially in the manufacturing sector had slowly started operating a second shift in the last few days to fulfil orders. At this stage, another lockdown will destroy the morale of the management and workers,” he said.
Comparing Karnataka to Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Maharashtra, Janardhan said Covid is more rampant in those states which have not imposed a lockdown.
“In Pune, Chennai and Delhi social lockdown was imposed but industries were permitted to operate by adhering to norms prescribed as per the ministry of home affairs guidelines,” he said.
An official from the Karnataka Small Scale Industries Association (KASSIA) said the sector has barely recovered from the earlier lockdown and another lockdown will put it in great disadvantage.
“While it is certainly necessary for the government to take hard and effective measures to tackle the worsening pandemic in the city, what worries us is the inevitable consequences of all this on the wholly beleaguered small industry sector which may end up completely shattered as a result,” he said.
According to the official, nearly 20% of all the small and medium enterprise have shut down operations in the state due to the earlier lockdown.
“Bengaluru has nearly 2.4 lakh registered units with an employment of 25 lakh and investment in the range of Rs40,000 crore.
This is excluding the unorganised sector which is close to the organised numbers. The economic and social impact will, therefore, be disastrous,” said the official.
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