Break the Chain: Hoteliers across Maharashtra hold silent demonstration to protest against state govt's COVID-19 restrictions

Mumbai: Hundreds of hoteliers and employees of restaurant chains staged protest demonstrations outside their business establishments on Thursday afternoon. Members and employees of the establishments staged a silent protest by wearing masks and flashing placards at 12.30 pm sharp. Members of the association said that the protest was carried out at all major hotels across the state at the same time.

Earlier on Wednesday, various associations of hotels and restaurants had launched the #MissionRoziRoti campaign in order to highlight their desperate bid for survival. The hospitality sector is going through a financial turmoil as the government has imposed strict restrictions on hotels amid the rise in COVID-19 cases across the state.

Break the Chain: Hoteliers across Maharashtra hold silent demonstration to protest against state govt's COVID-19 restrictions

Hospitality Associations across the State including the Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Association of India (FHRAI), Hotels and Restaurants Association of Western India (HRAWI), Indian Association of Hotel and Restaurants (AHAR) have formed the United Hospitality Forum of Maharashtra (UHF) as part of which they had launched the silent protest demonstration on Wednesday.

The impact of COVID-19 on the hospitality industry has been extremely disruptive. Among all the core sectors of the economy, hospitality was the first one to fall and is going to be the last to recover, hence becoming the biggest causality of the pandemic in the country," said Pradeep Shetty - joint secretary, FHRAI.

Break the Chain: Hoteliers across Maharashtra hold silent demonstration to protest against state govt's COVID-19 restrictions

Shetty said that over 20 per cent of hotels and restaurants haven’t opened fully after the lockdown, while the remaining 50 per cent continue to run in losses and revenue generation is below 50 per cent of the pre-COVID levels.

"Our businesses are under immense financial stress and the latest ‘Break The Chain’ order is equivalent to another complete lockdown," he added.

The Forum has stated that the latest Break The Chain guidelines have spelled a death knell for the industry. Repercussion to jobs, revenues and the spirit of enterprise is severe and irreversible, the Associations have pointed out.

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