As per the order, hospitality providers can resume operations outside the containment zones with standard operating procedures (SOPs) prescribed by the ministry of health and family welfare in a phased manner. But the order also says that states, based on their assessment, can prohibit the allowed activities outside the containment zones, as deemed necessary.
ET had reported in its edition dated May 30 that a phased opening for hotels was likely though implementation would depend a lot on states.
“We are thankful to the ministry of tourism, Niti Aayog and EG – 6 for flagging our concerns and we look forward to closely working with the ministry of tourism and with state governments for harmonising opening guidelines and for generating domestic tourism demand during unlock one and unlock two,” said Nakul Anand, chairman, FAITH, and executive director ITC.
Sanjay Sethi, managing director of Chalet Hotels- the owner and developer of high end hotels managed by brands like Marriott and Accor said his chain is happy to welcome back guests and employees with a stronger commitment towards their safety and health.
“We are excited about the government’s decision to open hotels and restaurants with restrictions from June 8. Along with enhanced hygiene standards, including sanitisation at every touch point from arrival to check-in to rooms and dine-in, we are also deploying advanced tech tools to deliver a seamless guest experience,” Sethi said.
While hotels are expected to follow SOPs prescribed by the ministry of health and family welfare, many big chains including Marriott International, Indian Hotels Company (IHCL), ITC Hotels and Lemon Tree Hotels have also worked on creating revamped SOPs at their end for ensuring safety and security of guests.
“We are awaiting futher clarity and detailed guidelines from the state governments to ensure a smooth exit from the shutdown. This will be a new beginning for the hotel industry and we are optimistic about the future,” he added.
Anurag Katriar, president of National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) said he welcomes the MHA decision to segregate containment and non-containment zones for kickstarting the economic activities in the food and beverages industry.
“This is a very logical decision to make. It is important to kickstart the economy with adequate safeguards in safer places while continuing with the lockdown in more severely impacted zones. However, we fail to understand the logic of keeping out bars from the purview of permitted activities and the same must be permitted as well,” he added.
Katriar said NRAI will engage with various state governments to put together stringent safeguards to ensure a safe environment for its consumers and employees.
“We would like all safeguards to be in place before we open our restaurants again,” he added.