New Delhi, Aug 21 (IANS) Not lovin’ it, say Delhi’s foodies. Students, professionals and even the retired patrons of McDonald’s on Monday expressed sadness and disappointment over the upcoming shutdown of its 169 outlets across north and east India, including the remaining dozen in the capital.
The US firm earlier in the day announced termination of the franchisee agreement between its India arm McDonald’s India Private Ltd (MIPL) and Vikram Bakshi-headed Connaught Plaza Restaurants Ltd (CPRL), effectively shutting down all 169 McDonald’s outlets in northern and eastern India after a fortnight.
McDonald’s India said it was scouting for a new partner to re-establish a profitable business in the region but the uncertainty about when new outlets would carry over made people blue.
“They are saying that within fortnight these existing outlets will disappear. Will McDonald’s be able to find a new partner in a span of 15 days? I don’t think so. It’s sad that they are closing down,” a student from Indraprastha University told IANS.
Ankita Vazirani from Janakpuri said: “Shutting down of Mcdonald’s outlets due to license issue was shocking for all the burger lovers.”
She found it peculiar that the global food chain was closing down its outlets due to non-renewal of mandatory health regulatory license and a legal battle.
“I still see some hope in the commitment by Mcdonald’s of signing a new partner. It will not happen soon of course but eventually, things would be settled,” she said.
“They would not like to bear such a heavy loss in the Indian market.”
Those affected by the announcement are mostly students as they place trust in the fast food chain for its ambience, quality and reasonable prices.
“We come to McD (McDonald’s) to chill. At times, we work on our projects alongside burgers and cold drinks. The best part about McD is the atmosphere as the staff is cooperative,” said 24-year-old Neetu Verma.
Muskan Anwar, a first year student from Zakir Hussain College, shared her memories from when she was in school and how she and her friends would organise their birthday parties at the restaurant.
“I and my friends see McDonald’s as the best option to hang out. I absolutely love the combination of McSpicy Paneer burger with the McFlurry… will miss these till the time new outlets are re-opened,” she said.
Forty-three of the 55 McDonald’s outlets in Delhi were shut down on June 29, due to a tussle between the north Indian franchisee and the global food giant.
“It is everywhere… in every market, in every mall and other areas across the city. Rates are quite reasonable too,” 21-year-old Antra Fuloria said, adding: “I feel so sad when many outlets in the city are already shut.”
Anmol Agrawal, 22, said: “McD is our only hope in the end of every month when we wish to eat out. It can’t just shut down like that.”
“There are no other outlets where we can find such amazing combos within our budget.”
For 27-year-old Rajiv Giri, McDonald’s has revolutionised the fast food industry. “There are very few fast food chains that can match the quality, taste and value for money which McDonald’s delivers. As a patron, I will surely miss my regular soft serves and French fries,” he said.
For P.N. Sidana, who retired years ago, the Connaught Place outlet holds many memories. He would visit the store with his friends to eat and chit-chat and said he loves their coffee and veg burgers the most.
“We will miss the place. These outlets must reopen soon. Who takes up the franchisee is not our concern. Even if McD doesn’t come back to the same spaces, we will be fine. Just that the quality should remain the same,” said Sidana.
Post Source: Ians feed