As Indian is burning with the series of protests against the Citizen Amendment Act (CAA) taking place all across the country, the ecommerce businesses have taken a major hit, especially with the Indian government rapidly snapping off the internet services in various states.
According to a report in ET, the online food delivery businesses — Zomato, Swiggy and UberEats, among others — have been cut short by 25% to 30%. Zomato caters to 1.2 Mn users daily, whereas reports suggest that Swiggy handles close to 1.4 Mn orders daily.
On the other hand, even the ecommerce services have been disrupted by 3-5%. Roadblocks and internet shut down are the biggest contributing factor to the development. The companies believe that if the internet ban is sustained any longer, it will adversely affect the Indian ecommerce.
A senior executive of a leading ecommerce marketplace told ET that deliveries were delayed in Delhi-NCR on Thursday (December 19) and the orders flow was badly impacted in the Northeast as well.
Online grocery delivery platforms, BigBasket and Grofers, also backed the claims that the internet shut down, protests and road blockages have affected their businesses in some cities.
Grofers’ cofounder and CEO, Albinder Dhindsa, told ET that its business has been affected adversely in Guwahati, Assam and some delivery vehicles have been caught up in Delhi and Kolkata traffic snarls as well. But with internet services restored in Guwahati, Grofers is a little positive.
BigBasket’s cofounder Hari Menon, on the other hand, told the publication that there was disruption in Kolkata, a few days ago, but the situation has now been restored to normal. He added that there was not much impact in other cities.
Another report by Software Freedom and Law Center (SFLC), the Indian government has snapped internet services 373 times since 2012. As the citizens are protesting against the Citizen Amendment Act in several cities, the police have been violent to the protestors, who were majorly students.
Besides Delhi and Assam, internet services have also been snapped in Tripura, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and parts of West Bengal, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh.
The Citizen Amendment Act provides a mechanism to the non-Muslim minorities of the neighbouring countries Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan to seek Indian citizenship.
The law only entitles Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians, who are facing persecution in the three countries, to become Indian citizens as long as they have been residing in India for six years. The elimination of the particular community from the Act is the major reason for the protest.