Business Leaders Support PM Modi’s Call for 21 Days Lockdown


India, March 27, 2020: The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, had on March 24, 2020, announced a 21-day nationwide lockdown to prevent further spread of COVID-19. In his second address to the nation – his second within a week – warned citizens that any let up on their part could set the nation back by up to 21 years. 

Various business leaders have supported the PM’s decision regarding the lockdown

Malini Agarwal, Founder and Creative Director, Miss Malini: “I fully support the government’s initiative to keep us safe from this frightening pandemic. We have to trust in the guidance of our public health officials and the scientists and doctors on the front line of this battle. The data shows that the only way to flatten the curve and prevent our healthcare system from becoming overwhelmed is to isolate ourselves and avoid all non-essential contact with each other. This is the right decision and I implore all of my fellow citizens to take this seriously and listen to the authorities. Anyone who thinks this is an overreaction is not paying attention to the rest of the world and we must break the chain of infection. Social Distancing and good hygiene are the only things quite literally in our hands. Each one of us must all do our part to keep all of us safe. This is not a time for rebellion or complaining over inconvenience. 21 days may seem like a long time but these three weeks are critical to how our country will be impacted by COVID-19. Please stay safe, stay home and trust the authorities who are doing this for our own well being. It is now on us to ride this wave. Take this time to focus on your mental and emotional well-being and be a support for others. We will get through this together.”

Kausshal Dugarr, Founder and CEO of Teabox:  “The current situation has affected us as it has many other businesses as well. We see this more as a supply disruption rather than it disrupting the demand side. However, our category is perennial and we do not see a huge dip in demand. Given the unpredictability and uncertainty that is laid before us, we are taking the necessary steps to reduce overheads and extend our working capital among other things. Embracing an optimistic attitude, we believe and we see ourselves coming out much stronger once the dust settles.”

Senil Shah, Founder of New York Burrito Company: “On the business end, everything will be shut. So there will be a complete loss. Two major fixed costs are rentals and salary. On rentals, we are trying to reduce it. On the salary front, we are not firing any of our guys, as we believe to stand with them in this crucial time. But overall we are positive on the front that when the restaurant industry opens up there will be a spike in sales as so many people who are addicted to eating out are waiting to eat out.”

Ranveer Brar, Celebrity Chef: “I think it’s an essential and an excellent step by the government of India. Considering the scale and the amount of damage that such a pandemic can cause in the country which is extremely densely populated, and also extremely susceptible to the damage done. I think these are the 21 days that we need to give to our nation to save the year that would go behind if we don’t stay in for 21 days. I applaud the government for taking this bold step. And I’m pretty sure the government both central and state will take care of people who live on daily rations. But it is our time to stand in solidarity with the decision and stay indoors.”

Tarandeep Singh Sekhon, Marketing Director at KidZania India said, “Difficult times call for difficult decisions. I completely stand by this lockdown initiative. We need to act now for a better tomorrow. We should understand that it is for our better, and at the same time do not panic. Prevention is better than cure, and the only option when no cure.”

Geeta Ramakrishnan, Ontological Coach and Author: “This I assume must be a difficult decision for the Prime Minister and I am in total agreement. COVID -19 pandemic is not to be taken lightly. We have examples of countries like China, Italy and the US to learn from. This 21-day lockdown will hopefully break the exponential growth chain and help our healthcare resources and system to be better prepared and to manage the virus outbreak much better. Yes, it will not be easy and can cause a lot of inconveniences and an economic turmoil which I can’t even fathom. I pray that all my fellow citizens respect their safety and that all Indians and I think this is a small price to pay for the sake of the safety of all our lives.”

Kaustubh Sonalkar, Group President, Corporate HR, Essar, and CEO, Essar Foundation: “We commend the efforts of the Administration to fight the spread of Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) in India and respect its decision to enforce a further 21 days of lockdown. We are completely aligned with Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s belief that social distancing is the only way to keep Covid-19 from spreading. As one of India’s largest corporate houses with thousands of direct and indirect employees, we have adopted decisive measures to ensure social distancing, while securing the safety and well-being of our people and their families, which is of paramount importance to us. This includes the option to work from home, a step that was introduced several days before the imposition of lockdown. Our CSR teams are working overtime to service the needy and provide the necessary support to communities in affected parts of the country.”