Industrialists traders protest dark times

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FAISALABAD, April 8: All traders in the eight Clock Tower bazaars and other areas observed a black day against power outages, imposition of fuel adjustment surcharge and recent increase in petroleum prices.

The call for the black day was given by the All-Punjab Textile Council and trader associations.

The markets of Katchery, Rail, Karkhana, Montgomery, Jhang, Bhawana, Aminpur and Chiniot bazaars besides Jaranwala Road, D Ground, Sattiana Road and Madina Town remained closed for three hours. After observing the protest, a number of shopkeepers opened their shutters.

The associations draped Clock Tower, one of the oldest monuments in Faisalabad, and buildings situated near it with black fabric, which was symbolic of economic turmoil. Similarly, black flags were hoisted on different buildings and vehicles. Black banners inscribed with slogans were unfurled at various places.

The industrialists and textile exporters wore black suits and staged protest rallies. They chanted slogans against the federal government and demanded smooth supply of electricity and withdrawal of fuel adjustment charges and increase in petroleum products’ prices.

Rallies were taken out also in other localities and the protesters burnt tyres at Amtex Chowk, Abdullahpur on Jaranwala Road.

The riot police were deployed at various bazaars and roads to avoid any possible damage to the public and private property.

All-Punjab Textile Associations Council chairman Rana Arif Tauseef said the situation of energy supply in Punjab was worsening with every passing day. He said Punjab was bearing the
brunt of the energy crisis despite lowest line losses, minimum pilferage and maximum recoveries.

He said excessive power outages had been affecting the industrial activities in the textile capital of Pakistan. Thousands of workers had been rendered jobless owing to the crisis, he
said. He said 5,000 black flags were hoisted on Sunday.

On March 27, a complete shutter-down strike was observed in the city markets as participants in the rallies threw stones at a slum and damaged some vehicles.



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