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The Coronavirus pandemic has affected many sections of the society. Construction workers are one such segment, whose daily lives have been impacted. An estimate shows that there are 8.5 million workers in the construction industry. Considering that these people may find it difficult to meet their own needs and the needs of their families, the centre has directed states to use the Rs 31,000-crore welfare fund for construction workers, to help them. Meanwhile, real estate developers have also come forward with help and support, at this crucial time.
There is a pressing need to protect this vulnerable section of society from the COVID-19 virus and also to keep them fit to resume pending work, when the situation improves. Several reputed developers have been helping their workforce, with essential supplies and hygiene kits. Roop Bansal, a trustee at the M3M Foundation, says that they are providing rice, pulses, vegetables, clean drinking water and milk for toddlers and children. Apart from this, they will also provide soaps for personal use and for washing clothes. Fumigation and sanitisation of the camps are also being undertaken. “Most of the labourers and daily wage earners are not in a position to purchase food items for more than five days at a go. The motive of this effort, is to help them through the lockdown period, by providing the necessary food items,” explains Bansal, adding that an estimated 5,000 workers will benefit.
At Rustomjee, labourers are being assisted with food. They are housed at the Rustomjee labour camp at Virar in Mumbai, where soap and hygiene kits are being distributed, to ensure that everyone has access to basic necessities. The company has also decided to pay the electricity and water charges for the labour camp, so that the labourers can stay safe and calm during the lockdown period.
There are many other developers who have also taken various steps to benefit their workers.
|Developer/Company||Assistance provided to workers|
|FeedMyBangalore movement by Prestige Group, JLL India and Big Basket|
|MAN Industries (India) Limited|
|Ashwin Sheth Group|
Impact of COVID-19 lockdown on real estate
India’s real estate sector, which supports almost 250 allied industries and had just been recovering from a prolonged slump, has again been dragged into a slowdown by the Coronavirus pandemic. This time, the repercussions could be hard-hitting for the economy. If construction workers start migrating to their villages for an unspecified amount of time, it will be very difficult to meet project delivery timelines. This could leave many home buyers in the lurch.
We are thankful to companies/developer firms who have undertaken to help the construction workers. If your real estate company has done their bit to assist the labourers, do write in to us at email@example.com.
What is the PM-CARES fund?
The Prime Minister's Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund was set up on March 28, 2020. The funds collected through it, will be used to combat the Coronavirus pandemic.
What is the building and other construction workers fund?
The Building and Other Construction Workers (BOCW) Welfare Boards of each state, constituted under the BOCW Act, collect a cess of 1% on the cost of construction, which is used by the Board to provide safety, health and welfare measures for such workers.