Automobile manufacturers across the country are shutting down manufacturing facilities to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The country's largest car maker, Maruti Suzuki, said on Sunday it had shut down its manufacturing plants located in Gurugram and Manesar, Haryana. "The Company will shut production and office operations at its facilities in Gurugram and Manesar, Haryana with immediate effect till further notice. The R&D Centre at Rohtak will also remain closed. The duration of this shutdown will depend upon Government policy," Maruti Suzuki said in a regulatory filing.
"Maruti Suzuki has been taking all recommended precautions in its operations against the spread of COVID-19, which includes sanitization and hygiene, temperature checks, maximizing video-conferencing and minimizing contact, closing employee travel, health and distancing advisories to employees and following all government directions on the subject," Maruti Suzuki said.
Earlier, Mahindra & Mahindra stopped manufacturing at one of its plants in Maharashtra and said it would also suspend work at two others from Monday. Group company chairman Anand Mahindra said on Twitter that the company will immediately begin work on how it can make ventilators at its plants.
Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz and Fiat as well as Bajaj Auto all said they would halt production at their Pune plants until March 31. Fiat said it will not cut jobs and will continue to pay salaries of all its employees.
The top-selling bike maker Hero MotoCorp said on Sunday it had stopped manufacturing at all its plants in India, Bangladesh and Colombia.
Tata Motors said on Friday it was rapidly scaling down activity at its car factory in Maharashtra and was preparing to close it if concerns about coronavirus deepen.
Following the production cuts announced by the automobile makers, the auto index on the NSE - the Nifty - dropped 12 per cent.