‘50% gathering for Banquet Halls must be allowed’: Gourav Gupta

As the covid-19 cases in Jammu have decreased, the Administration has given leniency in many Departments. However, Banquet Halls are still allowed to have a gathering of only 25 people per function.

Raising this issue, Chamber of Commerce Secretary General Gourav Gupta had an exclusive interview with  executive Ashish Kohli and demanded 50% gathering for functions.

Q. How much loss it has been to Banquet Hall owners and don’t you think it’s the need to allow 50% gathering?

Covid-19 pandemic has taken over many things. The first wave, then the second. All of us were shocked and it was honestly difficult to deal with it. Third wave is in talks and things are really uncertain. But the Industry which is dealing with the greatest loss is Banquet Halls.

The SOPs for this sector are not understandable. Whether your hall is one kanal or 25 kanals, you have to accommodate only 25 people. The Chamber of Commerce has written a letter to LG Sir requesting the Administration to review its decisions. You see Banquet Halls have maintenance charges, Catering employees, DJ and guests related to them.

It’s August and situations are very much in control. Every Industry’s guidelines have changed except this. Marriage halls still allow only 25 packs. I feel the gatherings should be allowed on the basis of Hall size. On the parallel side, gyms and Restaurants have allowed 50% capacity.

For the survival of our businesses, we all are struggling but this cannot happen for long. Our request is straight forward to allow 50% gathering in Banquet Halls respective of their sizes and social distancing guidelines.

Q. You’ve raised voices in the past relating to various matters. Do you think LG sir will listen to your appeal?

Sometimes we expect too much from Government. Reviews cannot be made overnight and policies can have problems too. We have appealed the LG to look into the matter because its not related to a single person but groups of people.

PM Modi Ji clearly said that the wages of employees would be given on time inspite of the lockdown and other struggles. People of Jammu are Nationalists and they are following these instructions. But its difficult to give salaries to the employees when they aren’t earning much. It’s a simple request and I expect Administration to revert back with a solution.

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