E-commerce companies have requested the government to allow online delivery services during the prohibitory order.

Even though the government has allowed food-related industries and shops to operate, no decision has been taken so far regarding e-commerce companies. The ecommerce companies have claimed that the government has failed to realise the importance of e-commerce services during such a critical situation.

Thus, the companies have submitted a request letter today to the chief district officers of all three districts of the Kathmandu valley, the COVID-19 Crisis Management Centre (CCMC) and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies.

The companies have claimed that their home delivery services could help reduce the spread of the deadly coronavirus ravaging the country at the moment. Stating that there is a need for coordination through the administration to ensure safe home delivery by encouraging digital payments and maintaining physical distance during the pandemic, the companies have demanded to facilitate home delivery services.

The statement has further added that even during the first wave of the pandemic last year, e-commerce companies faced obstruction and arrests from the administration while providing services to the consumers in a safe manner. "It is important to understand that e-commerce is safe because it is easy to carry out contact-tracing, there is no black market as there is a clear price receipt, and delivery is done maintaining physical distance," reads the statement.

Reminding that transport workers have been vaccinated against the COVID in collaboration with Department of Health Services, they have demanded allowing delivery personnel to carry out their services by showing their ID.

Although Sasto Deal is delivering food in collaboration with government-owned Food Management and Trading Co Ltd, other companies are not allowed at this moment.

The statement has also stated that along with food items, stationery items should be listed as essential goods as students are taking classes online due to the prohibitory order

A version of this article appears in the print on May 4, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.