With the world in the grip of the dreaded coronavirus disease, and the people in the state, including employees and industrial workers asked to stay at home, the Goan industry is looking to cut down on expenditure on wages and staff salaries.
In a meeting with the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, on Monday, representatives of local industry sought government’s permission to pay only minimum wages to employees while at home to compensate for the loss in production.
Industry also took an objection to the government declaring the three day extension of ‘janata curfew’ as paid holidays as it is likely to involve payment of twice the wages or overtime to the workers.
Members of industry put forward their demands before the Chief Minister in the morning even as they conveyed total support to the government in tackling COVID-19.
The demands also include a request to bring pharmaceutical units under essential services so that there is no disruption in the industrial production.
Industry in the state is bracing for a longer period of employees staying at home and production shutdown with no end in sight to the coronavirus disease.
Industry representatives told the Chief Minister that the industrial sector completely supports the government action of stopping all trade and industrial establishments to prevent the spread of the disease, but pointed out that all industries must not be clubbed under a single closure order.
Further units must be allowed to conduct important and mandatory operations during the period of closure. These include operations of the effluent treatment plant, security services, etc. Such essential services normally take 20 per cent of the employed work force, said the representatives.
The Goan industry united to present its demands to the Chief Minster with the meeting being attended by Blaise Costabir, chairman of CII-Goa, Manoj Caculo, president of GCCI, Damodar Kotchkar, president of GSIA, Praveen Khullar, president of Goa Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association, Raj Kumar Kamat, representing BNI, among others.
Post-meeting Caculo said, “Goan industry meeting with the Chief Minister was to request for concessions to facilitate skeletal services and also to finish work-in-progress.”
He said that the Chief Minister is expected to study the demands and come out with recommendations.