Coimbatore industry associations take stock of issues confronting MSMEs

L N Revathy | Updated on April 20, 2020 Published on April 20, 2020

Seek govt help by way of direction; have sent 25 representations in 22 days

Presidents of various engineering industry associations in Coimbatore y have been quite busy during the lockdown period, pleading with the powers that be on various issues impacting the MSME sector.

“We have sent 25 representations in 22 days ,” said Codissia President, R Ramamurthy.

Besides appealing to the government, the association heads had also to consider their members’ plight, he said.

“Incidentally, there has been no specific announcement for the MSMEs except for the three-month moratorium on loan. Unfortunately, banks are not reversing the auto debit and this is a cause for concern, for none of us has the wherewithal to pay salary to our workers. We had cash, which would have seen us through for a maximum one-and-a-half to two weeks. Suddenly, we find ourselves in a piquant, cash-starved situation. With no support from banks, how can we tide over the present?” he asked.

“We don’t need guidelines but direction — from the finance ministry to the banking regulator to the bank chiefs and in turn to the regional heads. Unfortunately, announcements are only on paper. They are not being implemented.”

Checking workers’ health

Industry sources agreed that the country was going through a difficult phase and they were with the government in its efforts to control the spread of the deadly virus. “We welcome the lockdown because human life is more important than business; only if we survive can we even think of growing our business.”

“Looks like the situation is under control. When the curve flattens and we are able to resume operations, the government should help in checking the health of the workers, for it would be next to impossible for us to check and track the movement or antecedents of each of the workers. In the situation we are in today, the government should bear equal responsibility, may be form a committee, to consider how to tackle this issue.”

“The government should not take the extreme step of sealing the operation of the unit should a worker test Covid-19 positive. How can the management be held responsible or the others that have reported for work to eke out a living be made jobless overnight?” asked Jayakumar Ramdass, President, Coimbatore Industrial Infrastructure Association (COINDIA).

Heads of 19 associations such as Codissia, Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, COINDIA, CII, Southern India Engineering Manufacturers Association, Institute of Indian Foundrymen and TN Association of Cottage and Micro Enterprises, to name a few, convened a press briefing (the first in the last three weeks) to highlight the plight of the MSMEs in this region.

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Published on April 20, 2020
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