The COVID-19 pandemic is truly a global phenomenon with almost the entire population of the world now living under a lockdown quarantine. The short-term human and economic impact is undeniable as people stay home, offices and shops close, and production stalls. The level of uncertainty in the economy is currently at an all-time rise with the trajectory of the recovery difficult to forecast. However, there lies an opportunity in every crisis, and Covid-19 looks no different.
The effects of COVID-19 in real estate companies are being impacted in different ways. In the near-term, realtors are concerned with preserving value, keeping tenants, visitors and labourers safe, including increased cleaning measures, and complying with governmental agency requirements.
As per reports, as many as 15.62 lakh housing units are currently under construction across the top seven cities in India. Of this, nearly 4.66 lakh units are to be delivered in 2020. However, instead of assessing the financial losses, the developer community is focused on the welfare of the people associated with them, including the labourers. Almost all the big players in the real estate sector have retained the workers by providing them food, shelter, and other essential items to help them sustain in these trying times.
Our Workers’ Safety Is Our Responsibility
For the first time in many years, the real-estate industry suffered a setback of two/three months owing to the imposition of the lockdown as announced by the Government. However, things have started to look up and we are extremely excited to get back to work. However, things are not the same as it was before and more than anything, our workers’ health is our topmost priority at the moment. It is their relentless work that will help us to deliver our projects in due time.
To ensure our workers’ safety, we are regularly sanitizing all our sites properly, making sure that not even an inch is missed. Most of the labourers who work at our sites are migrant workers and as a result of which they stay back at the under constructed sites. Initially, there was only one bathroom for them but now we have made an additional bathroom for their ease. There are two dustbins, one solely added due to the health and hygiene benefits of our labourers. While working, it is mandatory for all of them to wear masks, which are sponsored by us. We have allotted a rotation process for them and every day there are not more than 6 or 7 workers at a particular time. Social distancing is the new norm and they have strictly advised not to gather in groups for lunch or any other purpose.
We are certain that by following the above-mentioned rules we can be beneficial to a great extent- our labourer’s safety is maintained as well as our work continues in great form.
Assurance From Leaders
Whether it’s uncertainty about job status or uneasy feelings around ultimately returning to the physical workplace, the construction workers are experiencing stress from every angle. As leaders, we are providing all the necessary support to them, from undertaking precautionary measures such as avoiding group formation, providing sanitizers and face masks, and fumigating the site and labour camps, to providing medical assistance. The workers who have returned to their native places are being unable to return to the sites and we are completely understanding their dilemma. With regard to this, where the ongoing construction work is getting impacted, The Economic Times has suggested that Covid-19 needs to be declared as ‘force majeure’ under Section 6 of the Real Estate (Regulations and Development) Act (RERA) that provides an extension of projects registration granted to promoters.