Royal Enfield has commenced production at its Oragadam factory, after partial relaxation of the lockdown came into effect. The Chennai-based manufacturer had suspended operations on March 23, 2020, in line with government’s lockdown directives to curtail the spread of COVID-19.
Subsequent to the new directives issued by the government on May 1, with regards to resumption of manufacturing, industrial and commercial business activities, Royal Enfield has restarted operations at its manufacturing facilities from May 6.
The Oragadam plant near Chennai will be the first to begin operations in a staggered manner, with minimal staff over a single shift. Royal Enfield says, “employees and shopfloor staff residing in and around plant locations will be aligned to work in these units so as to avoid long-distance travel and minimise contact during transportation. There will be complete compliance to norms of social distancing and workplace sanitisation.”
Operations at the other two manufacturing facilities – Tiruvottiyur and Vallam Vadagal – will be started in a phased manner. All other office locations including corporate offices in Chennai, Gurgaon and the UK Technical Centre will continue to remain closed, and employees will work from home as of now.
While a majority of Royal Enfield’s dealer network will continue to remain closed, around 120 dealerships have begun partial operations. The company expects around 300 dealerships to be operational by mid-May, with strict safety measures and social distancing norms being followed. The company will offer facilities like ‘home test-rides’ to ensure adherence to preventive safety measures. During the period of the lockdown, Royal Enfield has extended warranty and free service validity for a period of two months.