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Crisis looms large in Tamil Nadu hotel industry over sale through parcel

Chennai, April 27(BPNS)

The Tamil Nadu hotel industry is facing a huge crisis after the sale of parcels from counters not meeting the expenditure incurred in many hotels. With Covid surging ahead the Tamil Nadu government has put a ban on dining inside the hotels and restaurants and instead to restrict the sale through parcel counters.

Chennai hotel owners association president M Ravi while speaking to BPNS said, “ Parcel sales are very low and we have sold much less than what we sell during regular periods. Moreover we have a workforce that has to be retained which is mostly migrant workers as our local workers have already left for their native places within the state. Situation is grave and if the government had allowed at least 50 percent dining within the restaurants we could have got something for a living.”

Many of the restaurants have decided to shut shop as they are not able to meet their expenses with the current sales. Krishna Kumar Rajagopal owner of Variety hotel, Pammal, Chennai while speaking to BPNS said, “We are a relatively new restaurant and have done heavy investment but I am disappointed after the restrictions have come into effect as parcel counters alone can meet our recurring expenses. I think that it is better to shut it down rather than incur more losses.”

Tamil Nadu hotel association state president  M Venkatasubbu also was apprehensive of the hotel business during the time of Covid. While speaking to BPNS he said, “The hotel industry is facing a major crisis and almost 25 percent of the hotels in Tamil Nadu have downed shutters as sales are not in expected lines while expenses to maintain workers and other incidental expenses continues to remain the same. Hence many hoteliers have nothing to do but to face the inevitable.”

Several hotels which are on the highways have already closed down their units as there is no counter sale and with dining restrictions in effect, sales have plummeted.

Joseph Mathew, who is running a restaurant at the Madurai highway has decided to close down his business as there are no takers for parcels . While speaking to BPNS, Joseph said, “ I have to shut my hotel as there is no business and on a highway you can’t get counter sales as most are travelers who eat from within the restaurant. I have several overheads including commitment to financial institutions and have to maintain a workforce. I was expecting the government to allow at least 50 percent dining in the restaurants to prevent them from closing down but with this order, we can’t carry forward.”