Expand essential goods list to include electronic items like laptops, mobile phones: Nasscom to Govt

Nasscom mentioned that in the time of working and learning from home, access to the basic equipment such as laptops, routers, tablets are absolutely critical.

Created On: Apr 20, 2020 18:41 IST
Electronic items to include in essential list
Electronic items to include in essential list

Nasscom, an industry body has suggested the government to add items such as laptops, routers, tablets in the essential list. These items will make working from home much easier amid COVID-19 lockdown.

After allowing the e-commerce companies to deliver the non-essential items such as electronic products, the govt on April 19 issued a notification stating the prohibition of non-essential items till May 3.

Even as per the guidelines issued by the Home Ministry allowed IT and IT-enabled services to operate with up to 50% strength, Nasscom had suggested the IT companies to bring back employees in a phased manner and must start with 15 to 20 percent workforce.

Key Highlights:

Nasscom in its tweet mentioned that in the time of working and learning from home, access to the basic equipment is absolutely critical.

An urge to the government was made to consider the basic requirements like routers, chairs, laptops, etc. as essentials for e-commerce deliveries.

Nasscom also stated that the decision to prohibit the delivery of non -essential items should have been thought through as many e-commerce companies have invested in deliveries starting from April 20.

Central Government’s changing orders on delivery of items:

During the first phase of nationwide lockdown from March 24 to April 14, the delivery of only essential goods through e-commerce platforms was allowed by the government.

On April 16, in fresh guidelines by Home Ministry e-commerce companies were allowed for the deliveries. States such as Odisha, Rajasthan, and Maharashtra also issued similar orders.

On April 19, the Home ministry again issued a notification and excluded the clause mentioning the movements of vehicles used by e-commerce companies from the guidelines.

Statements by e-commerce companies:

Amazon- The world’s largest online retailer Amazon mentioned that the government’s decision to prohibit the delivery of non-essential items will leave customers disappointed. But it stated that the delivery of essential products will be continued as per the guidelines.

Paytm mall has urged the government to expand the list of essential goods and includes laptops, phones to help the people working from home.

The senior vice president of Paytm Mall added that even though the government’s decision is supported, the range of essential goods must be increased.

He further mentioned that since people in India are working from home, they must not be running low on certain essential electronic products. It is important that mobile phones, computer hardware, webcam, laptops must be allowed under the essential goods.

Shopclues- Sanjay Sethi, CEO, and founder of e-commerce company also shared similar sentiments.

As the work from home has been applied for an extended period, it is important that apart from food, groceries, and medicine, the delivery of electronic and other small kitchen appliances is also ensured.

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