Mumbai: As real estate sector grapples amid pandemic, developers demand COVID-19 vaccination of workers at construction sites

Considering the massive impact of pandemic on real estate sector as several projects have been slowed down in past one and half years. Migration of workers one of the factors. Therefore, now the developers believe getting workers vaccinated at construction sites itself is essential, same on the lines of Cooperative housing societies.

The mounting fear among labourers can only be overcome once they are fully vaccinated, believes Manju Yagnik Vice Chairperson, Nahar Group & Sr. Vice President, Naredco, Maharashtra.

Yagnik said, "As many as two lakh units that were supposed to be completed by 2021-22 have been piled in major cities of Maharashtra especially Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur. This is followed by new inventory due to upcoming project launches in all top cities in the state and which will take another two to three years for completion has also been affected. Though we are slowly moving towards unlock now, there is a constant fear of a third wave across the state. Therefore, it is necessary that we get our workers vaccinated at the earliest."

The real estate sector contributes 14-15 per cent to the Nationa's Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It is the second highest GDP contributor after agriculture. As for any country's development economy is vital and real estate sector is second in line, vaccination is the need of the hour, said Yagnik. Meanwhile she also asserted that already the sector is finding ways for it and have already suggested that they are ready to bear the cost of vaccination. Besides all necessary infrastructure will also be provided.

Similarly, Rohit Poddar, Managing Director, Poddar Housing and Development LTD stated seamless execution of vaccination across the country would mitigate the cases significantly. "It will help in boosting the consumer sentiment across sector which in turn will increase the overall consumption, bringing businesses back on growth track. As the country opens up vaccination in a phase wise manner, the onsite vaccination will help in saving the hassle for the workers eventually leading to zero-halt operations across all the construction sites."

Also, Builders Association of India (BAI) which is an apex of all India body of Engineering, Construction, Contractors and Real Estate Companies having more than 20,000 business entities as members through its 200 plus centres across the country expressed similar views. Anand Gupta Chairperson, housing & RERA committee, BAI said, "Vaccination of workers on site if done can stop migration. Also it will make working at site safe. Which in turn can ensure timely completion of projects and boost construction industry."

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