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Indian apparel exporters want exemption from lockdown

Apr 16, 2021
Indian apparel exporters want exemption from lockdown

New Delhi

Indian apparel exporters have urged the government to spare them from the COVID 19 triggered second lockdowns as things are finally looking good for this hard-hit industry with migrant workers returning, orders stabilising, and better exports. Last year, the pandemic brought the world to a standstill, and as the industry was recovering from the loss, the second wave of COVID 19 has struck the country. Regarding this dire situation, the Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC) has requested the government to exempt factories from lockdowns and asked for an essential service tag for the labour-intensive apparel export industry.

A Sakthivel, Chairman, AEPC, in his letters to the government, stated the dependence of over 13 million workers (directly and indirectly) on the industry. Rural and backward areas, which are largely composed of MSMEs, will be severely affected if any disruption in workflow occurs at this stage.

Sakthivel noted that the strict safety precautions and hygiene protocols being followed by all factories as directed by the Ministry of Home Affairs guidelines and other advisories. He also mentioned that COVID-19 tests and check-ups are being regularly conducted and apparel exporters are prepared to take all necessary measures. However, a lockdown, even a partial one can ruin their chances of a better future.

The AEPC Chairman added that a new lockdown would cause a major disturbance in the apparel industry, especially after the immense hard work that’s been put in to get back on the global map.

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