Kerala traders to shut shop to protest entry of retail giants

February 21st, 2008 - 5:32 pm ICT by admin  

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 21 (IANS) Small and big traders in Kerala will not open their shops Saturday to protest the entry of retail giants, who are consolidating their position in the state. The shutdown has been called by two organisations of traders in the state.

The Kerala Vyapari Vyvasayi Ekopana Samithi (KVVES) will hold a protest meeting at Trissur while the Kerala State Vyapari Vyvasayi Samithi (KSVVS) members will march to the state secretariat here.

Both are demanding that the ruling Left government enact a law to prevent the entry of retail giants here.

“We want this to happen in the ongoing budget session of the assembly that began Wednesday. It is unfortunate that despite the opposition to retail giants opening shop in Kerala from all political parties, some already are functioning in the state,” KVVES leader Peringamala Ramachandran told reporters here Thursday.

“According to the present rules, any retail giant can open shop here. We demand the assembly formulate laws to prevent this,” KSVVS leader P.Vijayan said.

The two leaders indicated that close to 25 percent of the traders in the state are incurring huge loss because of retail giants.

“One of the main reasons for the unprecedented price rise now witnessed in the state is because of these retail giants. Earlier the rule was that a wholesaler could stock only 200 quintals of essential items but with the entry of retail giants that rule has been changed,” added Ramachandran.

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