KOCHI: As the state government has issued order on mandatory mid-day break for those working under sun from 12 to 3, the labour department has instructed online food delivery firms like Uber Eats, Swiggy and Zomato to take necessary measures to ensure safety of delivery boys operating during noon time. Most of the delivery boys are forced to work under scorching sun since their performance is assessed based on the number of orders they take.
“Though no special instruction in writing has been given to the online food delivery companies, they have been asked to comply with the government order on mid-day break. Action will be taken against the companies which failed to take measures to ensure safety of delivery boys. The delivery personnel should not be insisted to work during the sweltering heat,” said sources with the Labour department.
Meanwhile, the online companies are yet to issue any direction to the delivery boys in this regard. “We haven’t received any communication on taking the ma-ndatory midday break. Even if an instruction issued in this regard, it is not feasible to take rest during the peak lunch hours. Though it is really tough to operate during the noon time, we can’t take break as it will aff-ect our daily earnings. Morning 8 to 10, noon 11 to 3 and 7 to 11 during night are the peak hou-rs,” said a delivery boy.
“The average daily earning of a delivery boy is nearly `1000. Of this, the fuel and other basic needs like food and water have to be met. Hence, we are forced to work during the peak hours,” he added.
At the same time, the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority (KSDMA) has issued a directive to the food delivery firms not to assess the performance of delivery personnel during the noon siesta. The authority has also instructed to provide summer-friendly and heat-resistant uniforms to the boys....