This is not the new story in the Tourism hub of Goa, Calangute, where due to the lack of staff some restaurants and shacks make the use of waiter and dishwashers as cooks. Due to Covid most of the staff of the hotels and restaurants have gone back to their native places and there is a huge scarcity of the Cooks and to replace them the Dishwashers and waiters have turned into Cooks.
According to the reports, there are complaints from the people who regularly patronizing the restaurants in Calangute – Candolim beach belts, they are complaining of poor food quality served to them following the covid pandemic hit the state.
According to them, this is happening due to the non-availability of good chefs following the exodus of non-Goans to their native states over the past few months.
“Everybody from waiters to dishwashers is now doing the cooking in restaurant kitchens. There is no option because the owners don’t know how to cook,” John Lobo, the Calangute-based general secretary of the Shack Owners Welfare Society, said.
After the state government reopened the tourism industry, only a handful of restaurants have resumed business and most do only takeaways for locals and the odd tourist.
“There are a few tourists, but the number is not enough to fill up even five restaurants,” Lobo added.
There are hundreds of restaurants on the beach belt of Calangute and Candolim and most of them prefer to remain closed due to the non-availability of the staff and poor tourists’ footfalls due to Covid pandemic.
Many have tried to reopen following the unlock guidelines but soon shut down due to the fear of losing the reputation if they do not meet with the expectation of the market.
There’s also the Covid-19 situation. “The SOP says that if one staff member tests positive, all the other staff members will have to be quarantined or kept in isolation, which means the restaurant will have to be kept shut,” a restaurant owner said on condition of anonymity. “All our staff are from outside Goa. To call them back in this kind of situation is not possible.”
Those opening for business have consequently fallen back on workers who are still in Goa. “Some of the waiters and dish-washers know a little about cooking as they’ve been watching the chefs, but it’s not the same as before,” a hotelier said.