Swiggy delivery executives have stopped functioning in Thiruvananthapuram since Thursday afternoon. The delivery staff have been on a strike for the last three days protesting against the drop in their payment scale, as well as in incentives. More than 100 delivery executives gathered in Kazhakoottam to protest on Saturday.
The protestors claim that following the new regulations from Swiggy their income has reduced by half. The executives allege that they received a message from Swiggy on Tuesday declaring that their weekly incentives will be reduced from Rs 1500 to 1000. People who cannot cover a certain number of orders will have a further reduction, the delivery agents were told.
"Per order (within 5 kilometers) we used to get an incentive of Rs 50, but as per revised rules it has been reduced to Rs 25. If we achieve incentive of Rs 600 an extra Rs 200 would be given. But now that extra money has been reduced to Rs 150, only if we achieve an incentive of Rs 750," says Maheen, one of the protestors.
"We have been working tirelessly even during lockdown. We also took a certain risk in delivering food during the pandemic. Majority of us depend on this for a livelihood. Only a few among us are working as part timers," he added.
Those on strike say that the incentives enabled them to buy fuel and pay for vehicle maintenance.
"To make things worse, petrol prices are on the rise. There will be nothing remaining with us," Maheen added. He says that in the initial days he used to earn almost Rs 30,000 per month. "During lockdown the income was halved. These regulations have come on top of that," he added.
Another Swiggy delivery agent Manoj says that they will continue the strike until the previous incentives are reinstated. "We are not demanding anything new, but don't take away our existing payment system. We will not be able to survive. At this time when people are losing jobs, we won't even get another job," he added.