Home / Companies / Start-ups /  NRAI and BigBasket partner to help restaurant staff gain temporary employment

NEW DELHI: : As India's massive restaurant industry continues to deal with an unprecedented lockdown that has caused several restaurants to suspend dine-in facilities, and forced some to temporarily shutter down—it is trying to salvage the millions it employs.

The National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) said it is encouraging employees of restaurants that are temporarily shut to those who are currently out of jobs to take up temporary employment with online grocer BigBasket that is scrambling to fulfill orders across cities as the three-week shutdown has increased the demand for its services, but disrupted the movement of its supplies and delivery executives.

"NRAI is allowing and encouraging willing boys to take up temporary employment and make some money while the lockdown is on," Anurag Katriar, president, NRAI told mint. Katriar said that BigBasket needs crew to fulfill demand right now and they have tied up with us. “Our boys are taking up temporary employment with Big Basket right now while restaurants are shut. They aren't being laid off," he said.

“Yes, we are collaborating," said Hari Menon, CEO, BigBasket. Menon declined to share specific details.

Over the last few days as India has been put on a strict lockdown to contain the spread of covid-19—demand for online groceries has shot up. However the restricted movement of goods and people has also disrupted the supply chain for large online players who have had to temporarily scale back operations amid a surge in orders.

BigBasket services remained unavailable in several cities over the last few days. Such retailers are also facing a scarcity of delivery executives.

Now, as it gets back on its feet and moves to fulfill a backlog of orders—the retailer needs more hands on board.

The move also comes as India’s organized food services market—estimated at Rs4 lakh croer—is staring at mounting losses as closures, and limited delivery orders weigh heavy on the future of the restaurant industry. The sector directly gives employment to over 7 million people that are already staring at job losses.

NRAI has been seeking concessions for the restaurant industry failing which several restaurants could go belly up.


Suneera Tandon

Suneera Tandon is a New Delhi based reporter covering consumer goods for Mint. Suneera reports on fast moving consumer goods makers, retailers as well as other consumer-facing businesses such as restaurants and malls. She is deeply interested in what consumers across urban and rural India buy, wear and eat. Suneera holds a masters degree in English Literature from the University of Delhi.
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