From customers to delivery personnel, Zomato seems to be getting no respite across the country. Recently a Zomato customer received a lot of flak over canceling an order as he did not want delivery from a Muslim delivery person. Zomato response in the matter, “Food has no religion. Food is religion”, received unanimous support from netizens. But the latest fiasco involves delivery personnel themselves as they refuse to deliver beef and pork products in Bengal. West Bengal remains one of the few states where the central ban on beef is not applicable. People in the state can freely enjoy beef and pork-based food items.
But a portion of the delivery personnel has raised concerns over delivering such food items. While some Hindu personnel said they were being forced to deliver beef-based items, the Muslim employees had the same complaint about pork items. The situation is new and could be a result of the quickly rising right-wing influence in the state. Zomato released a statement saying, “In a country as diverse as India, it is impossible to ensure that vegetarian and non-vegetarian preferences are factored into delivery logistics. Delivery partners are unequivocally made to understand the practical nature of the job as they choose to enter the workforce. All our partners understand this fully. There is a small group of partners in Howrah who’ve raised concerns & we’re looking to resolve the issue.”
A call to strike is underway but what percentage of delivery personnel will join the strike is unclear at the moment.