Centre must retain Swadeshi form of doing business in India: Traders
GUWAHATI, Sept 28: Trade organizations from across the State on Friday joint the nation-wide Bharat Vyapar Bandh called by the traders’ umbrella organization, Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) to register protest against Walmart’s acquisition of home-grown retail giant Flipkart and 100% FDI in the retail sector. The impact of the bandh was so widespread that normal life was almost brought to halt.
During the bandh, commercial establishments, starting from wholesale to the pan shops remained shutting across Guwahati. As such, usually crowded commercial places like Fancy Bazar, Lakhtokia and Paltan Bazar appeared almost a garden of remembrance.
Moreover, hundreds of patients were caught up in a doldrums as most of the pharmacies in front of Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) and Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital (MMCH) remained closed during the bandh. Due to lack of stocks in the hospital owned pharmacies, patients are usually forced to purchase the prescribed medicines from the private pharmacies located outside the hospital. As such, shutting of the private pharmacies put the patients in a great anxiety during the bandh.
Almost all the major corners in Guwahati too were severely affected by the bandh. Eventually, places like Adabari, Pandu, Fancy Bazaar, Uzan Bazar, Guwahati Club, Silpukhuri, Bamunimaidam, Noonmati, Narengi, Zoo Road, Geetanagar, Chandmari, Jalukbari, Maligaon, Bharalumukh, Ganeshguri, Hatigaon, Sixmile, Bhangagarh, Ulubari, Paltan Bazar, Beltola, Fatasil Ambari, Bihnupur and Lalmati turned into solitary spots on Friday with a few vehicles plying on the road.
The city petrol depots also remained shutting during the band. However, numbers of individuals, ignorant of the bandh were seen coming to the petrol pumps for filling oil on their way to different destinations. Hence, petrol depots in and around the city were reopened from 12 noon, considering the difficulties they were facing.
Talking to The Sentinel, traders of Fancy Bazar said that Government of India must retain Swadeshi form of doing business in India. “USA way of doing business will not serve our purpose. Contrary, it will starve us. With 100% FDI in India’s retail sector, the foreign multinational giants will occupy exclusive control over our own market,” the traders said.
According to CAIT, almost 70 million people of India are directly or indirectly related with retail trade which often is referred to as the spinal cord of Indian economy.
“We strongly oppose the recent acquisition of Flipkart by Walmart. There should be some policies where the multinational giants cannot take over the retail trade,” the traders further said.
Notably, CAIT highlighted that the retail segment of India directly or indirectly contributing a significant amount to the GDP. The size of the retail market of India is almost 43 lakh crore. Apart from the revenue retail segment absorbs major human resources. After agriculture, retail is the major source of employment generation sector.
The CAIT’s bandh was supported by Assam Chamber of Commerce, Kamrup Chamber of Commerce, Wholesale General Merchant Association, North East Garments Traders Association, Assam Drug Dealer Association, All Assam Small Scale Industry Association, All Assam Publisher and Book Seller Association, North East Distributor Association, Assam Salt Merchant Association, Guwahati Motor Parts Traders Association, Guwahati Electric Merchant Association, All Guwahati Retail Traders Association, Ganeshguri GMC Business Association, Ram Mandir Land Merchants Associations, Guwahati Paper Traders Association, North East General Traders Association, Guwahati Sanitary and Hardware Association, Assam Pharmaceutical Association, Ganeshguri Commercial Association and Hotel and Restaurant Association.