Business hit, retailers approach CM - ECAS Punjab

Business hit, retailers approach CM

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Vijay C Roy

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 3

Incurring huge losses due to forcible closure by protesting farmers, retailers have approached Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and sought his intervention for smooth functioning of business.

According to a retailers' body, around 20-30 per cent of the stores, including modern retail outlets and smaller stores across the state, are not operating as farmers continue to sit on dharnas in front of shops. The industry in the state has been bearing the brunt of the agitation and now, with retailers' operations disrupted, it will prove to be a big blow to the state's economy.

"The protesters are forcibly shutting down stores. In some cities, stores of modern retail have been asked to shut down fully while in others, it is sporadic. On an average, 20-30 per cent of the stores are shut down," said Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO, Retailers Association of India (RAI), the apex body for the Indian retail industry. He added that there was fear among retailers. The agitation is causing economic losses not only to large businesses but also to small grocery shops.

"This has also led to job losses for daily wage earners who are mostly employed indirectly as third-party providers of logistics. The month-long agitation has also impacted the income of small farmers supplying to our members (stores)," he added.

"Looking at the crisis faced by our members, we have written a letter to the Chief Minister, seeking his intervention to enable ease of doing business in the state," he added.

The letter adds that despite economic activities picking momentum, recovery will not be possible if restrictions on operations continue. The retailers have demanded uninterrupted operations as the deadlock has continued for almost a month.

from The Tribune

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