E-commerce giant Amazon India and Indian Railways have strengthened their partnership for providing faster delivery of packages amid the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown.
In a recent statement, the online retailer announced it has scaled up its operations to 55 lanes for enabling faster deliveries to customers, boosting its partnership with the Indian Railways network.
Indian Railways has been operating time-tabled parcel trains across the country, ensuring the delivery of essential items. Last year, Amazon India had tied up with Indian Railways for inter-city transportation of e-commerce packages across 13 lanes. Amazon had also set up pickup kiosks for customers in the cities of Kolkata and Mumbai. The Sealdah railway station of Kolkata in the Eastern Railways zone comprised a pickup kiosk set up by Amazon India.
A PTI report quoted Abhinav Singh, Amazon India Director (Amazon Transportation Services) as saying that with the help of COVID-19 parcel special trains, the firm will be able to fulfil orders with greater speed and capacity. Indian Railways’ freight movement has provided proactive services across several zones such as South Central, Northern, Eastern, Southern, South Western, and few others.
Under the COVID-19 lockdown, e-commerce firms are permitted to sell only essential items such as healthcare, grocery and pharmaceutical products. The industry players are urging the government to also include ‘study from home’ and ‘work from home’ products in the list of essential items.
The Indian government had announced a nationwide lockdown starting March 25, to contain the spread of the highly communicable coronavirus infection. On April 14, it was announced that the lockdown is extended till May 3. So far, India has reported a total of 27,892 active COVID-19 cases, with 872 deaths.