Traders displeased by extension of COVID-19 curbs; urge Maharashtra govt to take 'sympathetic' look at their hardships
Photo Credit: AFP

Federation of Retail Traders Welfare Association (FRTWA) has expressed serious displeasure over the Maharashtra Government’s decision to extend the lockdown up to 7 am on June 1. The Federation has estimated that total business loss incurred by retail business by small and medium-size retail traders at Rs 69,500 crore for the period April 4 till May 31.

The Association President Viren Shah said there is no relief to shopkeepers terming the government decision on lockdown extension ‘’unfortunate.’’ ‘’ The state government has not even mentioned cities like Mumbai where cases are dropping and manageable and unlocking the city in a gradual manner. It’s high time that Maharashtra Government will have to seriously think of traders’ issues and concerns.’’

‘’We have supported the government in the lockdown but in return there is no reciprocal subsidy for closure of trade of 13 lakhs in Maharashtra for more than 55 days ending 31st May. Business Losses and unemployment are mounting up,’’ said Shah.

‘’We will take legal opinion of loss of business and lack of subsidy or direct money to the workers. Besides, there has been no waiver in property tax or various license fees,’’ he noted.

Shah said despite repeated pleas the state government has not initiated action against e-commerce and online players who are allegedly violating the lockdown notification and conducting their businesses. This has impacted the business of small traders adversely in the state. ‘’FRTWA has decided to approach court if no action is initiated against e-commerce online players by the state government,’’ he added.

He said the Association will take the legal opinion and approach the high court to intervene, directing the state government to cancel licenses of e-commerce players.

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