Rs two billion trade loss

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Trade and business centres on Tuesday remained completely shut on MQM s call to observe a day of mourning. Traders reckon around Rs 2 billion loss for closure of businesses in the country s largest financial hub of Karachi, following the mourning day call and renewed their demand from Pakistan Army to play its key role to end the unrest. Public transport remained off the roads while a small number of auto rickshaws were seen plying on the city s roads to transport commuters to their destinations. Markets of all kind of wholesales and retail goods remained closed mainly for fears of vandalism. The country s major wholesales grain market - Jodia Bazaar, also remained shut, which caused disruption to the supply of essential commodities to different parts of the city and upcountry. Markets in the old city area were shuttered down for the second consecutive day, due to Youm-e-Ali on Monday and MQM s mourning day on Tuesday, which suspended the supply of drugs, grain food, chemicals, jewellery and gold, cosmetics, plastic and hard wares, paints, ceramics, woods, steel, rubber and used clothes. Patrol pumps almost all over the city were closed, although police and Rangers were patrolling different areas to maintain law and order. We (traders) knew the labourers could not reach workplaces for unavailability of public transportation on roads because of the MQM s mourning day call which also made traders close their businesses on Tuesday, besides fears of vandalism, traders said. All Karachi Tajir Ittehad had already announced to keep markets sealed on Tuesday, immediately following the MQM s call. Traders said their businesses had continued to suffer losses during the Eid sales season of Ramaazan for violence in the city On the other hand, daily wage earners suffered utmost from the continued unrest in the city, as finding of jobs during such circumstances become difficult, said a mason, adding it is a life risk to come out for earning when there is no security . Almost a week ago, attempts were made to convince the public to visit markets for Eid shopping hoping the security situation would become better with each passing day of Ramazan but all efforts remained fruitless, traders showed disappointment. Our Eid sales season has almost ended without any boost in trade and business activities, as traders face life-threats by extortionists in all market, said President Old City Traders Alliance, Jamil Paracha. He said traders would soon chalk out their plan against the violence and extortion s in markets to protect traders in the future.

Courtesy : Business Recorder

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