Traders in Mumbai strike to oppose FDI in retail

Mumbai : Over one lakh wholesalers, retailers and small traders across Mumbai Thursday joined the all-India strike of the trading community – called by various associations and unions – to oppose foreign direct investment (FDI) in retail.

A majority of the retailers, wholesalers and other shops and establishments – barring restaurants and pharmacies – remained shut in Mumbai and its suburbs, said Viren Shah, president, Federation of Retail Traders’ Welfare Association.

“The response to the shutdown has been spontaneous and enthusiastic as it is a matter of the very survival of our traditional businesses on which nearly 20 percent of the Indian people directly or indirectly depend for their livelihood,” Shah said .

He said jewellers, cloth merchants and oil depots, besides other professionals participated in the strike Thursday, and most commercial hubs in the city and suburbs wore a deserted look since morning.

Elsewhere in Maharashtra, retailers did not open their shops and commercial establishments in places like Thane, Pune, Aurangabad, Nashik, Nagpur and other major cities and towns.

The shutdown call has been supported by all opposition parties at the state and central levels.

After Thursday’s daylong token agitation, the trading community plans to intensify the agitation in others forms in the coming few weeks.

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