CAIT calls for ‘Bharat Trade Bandh’ on Sept 28 to mark protest against Walmart-Flipkart deal

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 07 Sep 2018 10:08:19



Business Bureau

Intensifying its opposition to Walmart-Flipkart deal and FDI in retail, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) is all set to initiate a countrywide agitation on this burning issue with holding a ‘Bharat Trade Bandh’ on September 28. All shops and small businesses across country will remain closed on the day of bandh and no commercial activity will take place. About 7 crore small traders are expected to participate in the bandh.

Along side, CAIT is launching a 90 days ‘Digital Rath Yatra’ beginning September 15 from Delhi and will culminate into a mammoth rally at New Delhi on December 16. CAIT will release a ‘Traders Charter’ having various issues including no to FDI in retail. Addressing a press conference at New Delhi, CAIT National President B C Bhartia said that Walmart-Flipkart combination will destroy the retail trade of India as Walmart will be using e-commerce platform to flood the retail market with goods sourced from all over the globe. “Not only the traders but even the domestic manufacturing sector will be adversely affected to a great extent,” he said.

“As per media reports after Walmart now it is Amazon and Alibaba looking for same kind of deal which will be quite alarming as the retail trade will be squeezed in few hands which will lead to monopoly and crony capitalism,” Bhartia said.

Under the circumstances, the CAIT has given a call of ‘Bharat Trade Bandh’ to register the strong protest of domestic trade and demanding immediate interference of the Government to reject the deal as it has violated Press Note 3 of 2016 of the Government. “About 8 lakh chemists all over the country will also participate in the bandh as decided by All India Chemists & Druggists Associations at its meeting held at Mumbai,” he said. The All India Federation of FMCG Distributors Associations has also declared to close member establishments all over the country.

Praveen Khandelwal, Secretary General of CAIT while intensifying its protests, the CAIT is launching a door to door campaign against the deal & FDI in retail and will launch a 90 days ‘Digital Path Yatra’ on September 15 from historical Chandni Chowk in Delhi. The Yatra will cover about 22,000 km area covering 28 states and about 120 prominent cities while about 500 small cities will be covered en-route.

“The Yatra will connect with about one crore people and after covering the country will culminate into a mammoth rally on December 16 at historical Ramlila Ground at Delhi,” he said.

Brij Mohan Agrawal, CAIT National Senior Vice-President will be Convenor and Sanjay Patwari, National Secretary will be co-convenor of the Yatra.

Beside FDI in retail & deal, the Yatra will highlight various other core issues of the traders like need for simplification of GST, robust and transparent e-commerce policy, adoption and acceptance of digital payments, easy access to finance to small businesses through MUDRA and other means, need of national policy for retail trade, early introduction of Consumer Protection Act etc. To motivate the traders and people towards the agitation, the CAIT will use a specially made for the purpose by Bollywood music composer duo Salim Merchant and Suleman Merchant ‘Jago-Jago-Jago, Hey Desh Jago-Apne Watan ko Bachao’, ‘Retail FDI Ko Bhagao.’ CAIT has also designed a massive outdoor publicity campaign including optimum usage of social media as well.