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NRAI Kolkata chapter vaccination drive for industry



The Kolkata Chapter of the National Restaurant Association of India has started a vaccination drive for restaurant employees in Kolkata. ETHospitalityWorld spoke with Sagar Daryani – NRAI, Kolkata Chapter Head; Aditya Ladasaria – NRAI, Kolkata Chapter, Co-Head; and Devesh Sonthalia – NRAI, Kolkata chapter, Committee member, who also happened to be the main organiser of the drive.

The drive is taking place in Swagath Hotel on Hazra Road in south Kolkata and is open to restaurant employees in Kolkata who are not necessarily members of NRAI, Daryani began by explaining. The nominal cost of the vaccine is INR 315 which has to be borne by the restaurant or its employee and the rest of the cost is borne by NRAI—around INR 25,000 per day for the vaccination personnel, doctor and food set up for the volunteers, he added.

The money which NRAI receives from restaurants and employees is transferred to the West Bengal State Emergency Relief Fund and the West Bengal State Disaster Management Authority.

The entire transaction is done in advance online and there is no money changing hands at the actual vaccination centre, he added.

“We just felt that it’s very important for us and our restaurant workers to be vaccinated because they are frontline workers and customer facing. As long as we don’t make our restaurants safer, in terms of, health and hygiene, we will not see walk ins coming back to restaurants. Going to your restaurants and seeing empty tables and chairs is not a good sight,” Daryani said.

They felt that as an association it was important to have everyone vaccinated and have wear a badge which gives their status. The drive is not only restricted to members of NRAI and a few hawkers have also been vaccinated, he said. “However, we are encouraging people to become members. It also gives us a chance to let people know the benefits of becoming an NRAI member,” he added.

Members of the F&B fraternity in Kolkata line up for their jabs during the on-going vaccination drive organised by the NRAI’s Kolkata Chapter at Swagath Hotel in the city.
Members of the F&B fraternity in Kolkata line up for their jabs during the on-going vaccination drive organised by the NRAI’s Kolkata Chapter at Swagath Hotel in the city.

“Not only are we getting the vaccines at a low cost, to also motivate the employees, we have set up food and beverage stalls so everyone gets a plate of snacks and juices after getting vaccinated,” said Aditya Ladasaria adding that they were also approached by an old age home, where they facilitated the second dose for over 20 members, many of whom didn’t have the necessary paperwork done.

Currently the NRAI team orders the vaccines from the State Government according to the number of registrations they have received on an online form which has been created. Once that is done, the payment for the vaccine is made online via a payment gateway, Ladasaria said.

“What we have done is to minimize crowding at the vaccination centre, we are vaccinating up to 500 people over five hours every day, starting from 11 am. We have created batches of 25 people each and every 15 minutes one batch gets jabbed by one of five vaccinators at the center. We also have an ambulance and a doctor on call because that’s the mandate for the vaccination center. On the previous night we created a Whatsapp group where all the details are given to each batch of 25 people who are updated with all requirements so that there is no confusion at the centre,” he said.

The drive will continue till the end of the month at least, and the aim is to vaccinate at least 10,000, Daryani added. For more details about registering call Devesh Sonthalia on 98301 51451.

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