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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Chennai's heat.... home services take a beating as delivery boys suffer...

A newsitem in TOI of date reads ‘Home service takes a beating’…..

We have become slaves to many things….the city man cannot live without many … and there are no alternatives…  Geysers, Pressure cookers, Gas stoves, LPG cylinders, mineral water, washing machine, inverter, air-conditioners, cell phones – cell phone chargers, automobiles, elevators  – all are basic requirements and people will feel like fish out of water, if for a few minutes there is no charge in the mobile phone…. Gizmos and technology is welcome … but not addiction and abuse ….

People frequently lament and complain too… most have two cylinders at home.. still would lament of the delay – people would spend dining at costly hotels but a small hike in LPG price – the luncheon and other discussion would centre around how badly the Society [read the speaking individual] would be affected by the spiralling prices. There is complaint that the delivery boy does not turn in time and that they charge that extra pocketing that money……

We speak of the sweltering heat and mercury rising … but do we ever care for that poor delivery boy who has to come on a tri-wheeler loaded with cylinders on the same hot sun…… in olden days – residential localities like Triplicane, Mylapore, Mambalam had many tenants co-inhabiting one house…  now a days, there are big apartments housing no. of flats.. and in older ones, for reaching 2nd or 3rd floor also, there would be no lift; lift non-functional or no current at the time of delivery. There could also be the menace of dogs and   the like…..

Here is the article of Times of India titled ‘Home service takes a beating as delivery men wilt in summer’..

Chennai: Delivery boys are the worst hit this summer. Virtually roasted at work, several LPG cylinder delivery men have been staying away from work, affecting supply of gas at homes. Similar is the case of water can distributors, who pedal several kilometers on tricycles with water cans. Both LPG and water are distributed in the city on tricycles which are not motorized. Some distributors have instructed these people men to supply cylinders and cans before noon so that they don’t sweat it out much.

Oil companies said that there is no shortage of cylinders, but many residents said that they are not receiving cylinders on time. Captain R S Jagadeeshan, vicepresident of All India Indane Distributors Association said: “There are some difficulties in delivering cylinders to households. So we have asked delivery boys to supply cylinders before noon. Some have started distribution as early as 6am before the sun gets too scorching.” Many delivery men said the experience is hellish. “I feel drained in an hour. I’ve requested my distributor to provide an auto rickshaw or a van to supply cylinders,” said a delivery man. With many quitting jobs, LPG agents are dependent on a large number of migrant labourers from Orissa, Bihar and West Bengal. “Delivery workers have become unreliable. They come one day and disappear the next,” said a distributor on Anna Salai. Evidently the distribution workers don’t think it is worth getting burned out in summer for the 4,500 monthly salary and the average 10 tip they get from a house. “Sometimes I have to climb 50 steps to an apartment on a higher floor. The worst thing is to find the door locked. I don’t have another job, so I put up with the difficulties,” said a delivery man in Perungudi.

Water can distributors said that there are only few people willing to take up the delivery job. A Shakespeare, general secretary of Tamil Nadu Packaged Drinking Water Manufactures’ Association said: “Many wholesale distributors are not getting enough workers to supply water cans from units to retailers. Many of them have hired migrants who work for 250 a day. Locals charge 400 – 550 per day.” Restaurants too have cut down on daytime home delivery. K T Srinivasa Raja, president of Chennai Hotels Association said many delivery workers have become irregular. “Many restaurants now don’t deliver lunch at homes,” he said.

There is also the news that the Tamil Nadu Govt has instructed postponement by a week  of re-opening of schools, due to sizzling summer.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

29th May 2013.


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