On Friday The government has said that “e-commerce companies that their operations would not be disrupted amid a nationwide lockdown to fight the coronavirus, but most are facing crippling disruptions after just three days, sources familiar with the matter. Local issues such as differing state and district level regulations are hindering operations, the four sources, who asked not to be identified, said. In some cases, for example, it has been difficult for e-commerce firms to get curfew passes for their delivery people”.
Industry executives say local authorities have not uniformly followed guidelines and stopped delivery staff and company warehouses from operating.
Most of Amazon.com Inc’s 60 plus fulfillment centers in India were shut, with the company still in talks with state authorities to swiftly reopen warehouses.
According to sources “It’s worse than one can think,” said one of the sources. A miniscule numbers of Amazon warehouses were operational in the country, citing it as a key reason for disruptions. Even when operations do begin to partially normalize amid the lockdown, it will only be in major cities”.Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.The large-scale disruptions highlight the implementation woes faced in ensuring the supply of essential goods to 130 crore people during the nationwide shutdown.
India has reported 724 cases of coronavirus infection so far, and 17 deaths.Several users sought help from Amazon on Twitter about ordering essential items, and the company responded saying it was unable to deliver due to local restrictions.Amazon tweeted that “There are clear guidelines provided by Government to enable essential services, and so we are working with the relevant authorities to ensure we are able to operate”.