The Indian Federation of App-based Transport Workers (IFAT) and Telangana Gig and Platform Workers Union (TGPWU) have flayed Zomato for launching ‘Zomato Instant’ that promises food deliveries in just 10 minutes, which can expose thousands of delivery partners to danger and traffic risks.

“While Swiggy, Zomato, Blinkit, Instamart began to offer delivery services in 15 minutes, Zomato has joined the race by offering food delivery in 10 minutes. This will put the lives of delivery partners in danger,” Shaik Salauddin, Founder and Generation Secretary of IFAT, told BusinessLine.

Chasing targets

These offers are exposing thousands of delivery workers working for the app-based food platforms to risks on the road. “The incentive-driven work conditions make delivery boys chase those targets,” he said.

Meanwhile, after heavy backlash on Twitter, Zomato has come out with an explainer saying that the service covers only a limited menu and it would set up food stations for the delivery of standardised items.

“There will not be any penalties for late deliveries. There will be no incentives for on-time deliveries. The delivery partners are not informed about promised delivery time,” Zomato Founder Deepinder Goyal tweeted in a slide on Twitter.

Other concerns

Delivery partners, however, feel there are several unresolved issues such as leaked meals.

Shaik Salauddin, Founder and Generation Secretary of IFAT

Shaik Salauddin, Founder and Generation Secretary of IFAT

Salauddin said that delivery partners are being penalised for faulty packaging and leaked meals because of the thrust on speed when delivering orders. Before launching ambitious offers like 10-minute delivery, Zomato should resolve these issues and address the concerns of the delivery partners, he said.

“We urge Zomato to treat their delivery workers as human beings and not data points for the algorithm to manage. It should understand the stress and pressure it puts on delivery partners. They are not machines,” he added.

Zomato extracts data about the number of biryani packets ordered in a day but doesn’t provide information on the number of accidents its delivery workers met with.

“As it gets ready for the launch of ‘finishing stations’ to facilitate deliveries, it should ensure wash rooms and resting areas for the workers,” Salauddin said.