Sunday, May 9

Groceries to gadgets: Soon, an e-platform for doorstep delivery

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Your friendly, neighbourhood mudir dokan is set to join the online platform to ensure essentials are delivered to doorsteps during the lockdown.

Confederation of West Bengal Trade Association, which has more than 10 lakh traders as its members, is developing a website, which can be used for transaction during lockdown and beyond. It has already enrolled over thousand members and by end of this week, the likes of grocery stores, auto parts stores, shops selling computer peripherals, transporters and those dealing in electrical and electronics goods will be on the website.

CWBTA president Sushil Poddar said if the government gave the nod to this website, the platform could be used in an offline-online combination to deliver goods to customers. CWBTA, along with other tradeers’ associations, had earlier appealed to the Centre against the decision to allow e-commerce companies to supply non-essential items.

Ravi Jajodia, who has already enlisted for selling cycle parts on the website, said the initiative could be a game-changer for small-time traders. Vardarajan, who has enlisted for chemicals, agreed.

Poddar told TOI going by the plan, people could buy groceries to cycle parts to chemicals on the platform. “Our website, www.cwbta.in, could well be a one-stop shop for every need, from rice to computer parts. We also have transporters as member and so, last-mile delivery should not be a problem. During our interaction with chief minister Mamata Banerjee last week, we said traders are ready with any kind of help,” he added. CWBTA has also written to Union commerce minister Piyush Goel.

General secretary of CWBTA Rajesh Bhatia pointed out that e-commerce had to be an all-encompassing supplier in vast country like India. “Traders, as part of the supply chain, are here to stay in brick-and-mortar avatar, as they offer much more services,” Bhatia said. According to him, e-comm firms only have warehouses in select locations but traders have stocks of ready materials in remotest places, know their customers closely to judge their consumption capacity, and can take credit risk. “During lockdown, we have proved our worth. At a time when e-grocers failed to deliver, our kirana stores were the lifeline in most parts,” Poddar added.

 

Source: Times of India

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