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22/04/2020 04:29pm

FISME issues advisory for MSMEs against restarting factories in a hurry

image FISME issues advisory for MSMEs against restarting factories in a hurry

New Delhi, Apr 22 (KNN) The micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are facing a tough time due to lockdown. Struggling with problems like cash crisis to pay salaries to their employees, loans, zero production, electricity bills etc, MSMEs are all geared up to start their factories as soon as the government allows inorder to resolve their issues at the earliest. 

However, the Federation of Indian Micro and Small & Medium Enterprises (FISME) has warned them against rushing to do so.

FISME has warned that MSME sector, which is already loaded with problems lime disrupted supply chains, erratic movement of goods and severe cash crunch now have the threat of imprisonment if any corona related case comes up in their factories.   

“The prosecution provision under section 188 and other laws in the guidelines to restart factories in case of any con-compliance and covert threats by local officials of sealing of factories and imprisonment of owners have left MSMEs deeply worried”, says Dr. Animesh Saxena, President of  FISME, a group of over 740 MSME associations.  

FISME has advised its constituents to exercise caution while restarting and has suggested to wait till a more pragmatic set of guidelines are issued by MHA.   

FISME President opined that it is not about just thermal scanning, maintaining social distancing and personal hygiene, the guidance demands compliance on disinfecting entire factories from entrance gate of through building, office, meeting conference rooms and photographing while disinfecting.  

Further, owners will have to ensure that  for workers coming from outside, ‘special transportation facility be arranged without any dependency on the public transport system’. These vehicles should be allowed to work only with 30-40 % passenger capacity. Seating is to be so ensured that workers sit ‘at least 6 feet away from others on job sites and in gatherings, meetings and training sessions’. 

It is mandatory for factory owners to obtain Medical insurance for the workers not covered   ESI.  

“The factory owners have to file self-declaration and undertaking of this compliance duly signed by the authorised signatory” and in case of non-compliance of any of the above mentioned requirements, prosecution is to follow”, said FISME President.  

Moreover, few Chief Ministers have publicly said that District Magistrates and local Administration would be held responsible if new coronavirus cases are reported from any district, making local officials extremely nervous. 

FISME highlighted that every state has come out with its own guidelines to restart work post lockdown. 

For example, in Haryana and in Uttar Pradesh it is through a portal while states like Kerala have put a blanket ban till 3rd May.  

FISME President apprised that the industry body is working with health experts and some international organizations to develop a more pragmatic set of guidelines to restart operations which are to be more realistic of an MSME working environment. (KNN Bureau)

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