The COVID-19 second wave is gradually beginning to settle but the damage has already been done. Damage not only in terms of loss of lives but also loss of jobs and pay cuts that many employees had to suffer.
To curb the spread of the coronavirus during the second wave earlier this year, many states imposed full or partial lockdown following which the pace of business activity slowed down.
However, with curbs being eased gradually most industries are expected to pick up the pace but uncertainty still looms around the functioning of the hospitality and travel industries. Their situation seems to have not changed much given that people are avoiding tourism, both leisure and business-related as much as possible, amid fear of contracting the virus
Here is a list of firms that opted for pay cuts and layoffs to tackle the crisis:
Hyatt Regency Mumbai: Even as Maharashtra is gradually reopening, the luxury 5-star hotel has suspended operations until further notice due to a lack of funds. On June 7, Hyatt sent a notice to all its on-roll staff stating it hasn't been receiving funds from its owner Asian Hotels (West) and that with no funds forthcoming, it is unable to pay salaries or support the operations of the hotel.
SpiceJet: The domestic flight operator has again announced salary cuts for its employees. SpiceJet has resorted to paying its staff as per the number of hours served and deferment of salary up to 35 percent for a section of employees. The move comes against the backdrop of a drop in air traffic during the second COVID-19 wave. “While the salaries for the month of May shall be credited to your bank accounts on 1 June, there will be a graded deferment of up to 35 percent for some of our employees,” a letter from the HR to employees read.
IndiGo: Another domestic flyer IndiGo has reverted to its model of asking employees to take leave without pay (LWP) as the demand for air travel has taken a severe hit. “Unfortunately due to the reduced capacity we will have to institute an LWP program for all employees which would range from 1.5 to 4 days depending on the employee group (except for band A &B). All pilots would undertake 3 days of LWP for the next 3 months effective 1st June 2021," IndiGo wrote to its staff on May 31.
Go First: The airline that recently changes its name from Go Air has reversed its LWP scheme that was implemented last year impacting 700-800 employees. It has, however, announced a fresh pay cut of around 16 percent starting May, according to a Business Standard report.
“This is the second pay cut in two years and this time management has cut our basic salary. Typically, a larger portion of pilot salaries would constitute flying allowances. But now pilot work hours’ have drastically come down due to a drop in the number of flights. A few months ago I would get to fly 40-45 hours per month and now it has come down to less than ten hours,” a pilot was quoted as saying.
General Motors: An exception from the airline and hospitality industry, General Motors in India fired all 1,419 employees of a factory in Pune’s Talegaon. The automaker invoked Section 25 of the Industrial Disputes Act in April to lay off staff citing the pandemic. The General Motors Employees Union (GMEU) has challenged the layoff announced by the company alleging it is illegal, Business Standard reported.
The company stopped selling cars in the domestic market in 2017 and stopped production completely on December 24, 2020.
(Edited by : Aditi Gautam)
First Published: IST