Joe Biden talks to Atlanta Indian American restaurant owners about Covid-19 impact on small businesses

As small business across the world continue to struggle in the shadow of the pandemic, the owners of an Indian restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia, got the opportunity to sit down for a virtual chat with the president of the United States to talk about how Covid-19 has affected their business.

In a video released by the White House, US President Joe Biden was seen in a remote conversation with Neal and Samir Idnani, the owners of NaanStop

“As small business owners during the pandemic, every day is an open question,” said Samir in the video. “When President Biden found out about our situation, he reached out.”

“How’re you guys doing?” the US president asked the owners of NaanStop, leading Neal to say that their business had gone down almost 75 per cent since the pandemic hit last year. He added that from 20 to 25 employees, their staff had also gone down to 10-15 people. 

“What is the greatest need you have now for your restaurants to be able to survive?” Biden then asked – to which Neal responded by saying that their greatest need is for everyone vaccinated so people could go out again. 

Biden then spoke about his rescue plan for small businesses. “I put together a rescue plan that provides tens of billions of dollars in grants to small businesses,” he told the owners of NaanStop – which serves Indian food at three locations in Atlanta. 

“We have to invest more, not less. We’ve got to give you a chance to rebuild that’s separate and apart from dealing with the virus,” he added. 

The video has been watched over 1.8 lakh times on Facebook, where it has started a spirited discussion around Biden’s ‘American Rescue Plan’. 

The American Rescue Plan is a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus package proposed by President Joe Biden to fund vaccination, provide relief to families and support to struggling communities to help speed up the country’s economic recovery.

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