KUCHING: There will be no Ramadan bazaar this year due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, but it’s hard to imagine the Muslim fasting month without it.
An alternative to the normal annual Ramadan bazaar is online Ramadan bazaar or Ramadan E-bazaar. This can work to a certain extent as long as the gap between the food sellers and customers can be bridged efficiently.
This is where Helpy Delivery Services, a home-grown company comes in. It has an online platform called Digital Ramadan bazaar.
Its founder, Nur Iswandy Yakop told New Sarawak Tribune that its business model was unlike that of other e-hailing delivery service.
He said the main feature of their app was its ability to track the runners while they are on the job.
The app is done by an artificial intelligence tech start-up that is now in Jakarta doing technological research and development (R&D) related to Covid-19.
“We need to know the locations of our runners so that if anyone tests positive for Covid-19, the system can help the authorities trace the transmission of the virus,” he said.
“Our system actually requires vendors and runners to have their body temperatures monitored.
“If they are infected, the system can help us identify whether they have developed any symptoms in the previous seven days.”
Even with the use of such an app, food vendors and runners must comply with certain rules to contain the spread of Covid-19.
“To practise social distancing, we adopt the pick and drop method. Runners will only collect the food from the vendors and placed them at the collection points.”
Asked on the coverage of the Digital Ramadan bazaar, he said this platform would not only be for users in Kuching but also in Sibu and Miri.
“We have about 200 vendors in both places,” he said.
To date, Helpy has 10,901 users, 505 vendors and 2,348 runners across the state.