New Delhi: Neighbourhood shops were open but
most of the markets in the national capital remained shut
on Thursday as traders observed the all-India bandh in protest
against Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in retail sector.
BJP also joined the traders` protest by organising
marches and burnt effigies of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
and Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit in at least 20
locations of the city.
Confederation of All India Traders` Delhi unit president
Narender Madan said a large number of traders have kept their
shops shut to participate in the all-India bandh.
Madan claimed wholesale and retail markets were closed in
Sadar Bazar, Kamla Nagar, Chawri Bazar, Karol Bagh, Kashmere
Gate, Tilak Nagar, Rohini, Krishna Nagar and other markets.
CAIT Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said traders
across the country were participating in the bandh to protest
the government decision to allow FDI in retail.
"Around five crore traders belonging to 10,000 traders`
bodies across the country are participating in the bandh.
Traders took out marches in commercial markets across the
country," Khandelwal said.
Khandelwal said the decision on FDI will create an uneven
playing field in the country which will tilt towards MNCs and
prove to be a "nightmare" for traders and consumer.
Maintaining that there was no need for foreign investment
in the sector, he said, "The Government should withdraw the
permission of FDI in retail".
He said Indian retail sector was being run successfully
by the indigenous capital at the rate of 15 per cent and
contributing 10 per cent of GDP. "So no FDI was required".
"The foreign retailers can open in big cities, but they
will source from mandis across rural India and small town.
With their money and power over time, they can corner the
supply of produce and dominate the outsources side," he said.