Traders observe fast in front of Tirupur Railway Station

The all-India strike called by various traders/merchants associations on Thursday to express their opposition to the Union Government's decision allowing 51 percent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail and 100 percent FDI in single brand retail, has evoked mixed response.

Police sources said about 55 percent of the total shops in the district responded to the agitation call. However, majority of the shops in Tirupur city functioned.

Tirupur District All Traders' Association general secretary A. Iqbal told The Hindu that allowing FDI in retail would affect the livelihood of many people running groceries and small scale businesses in the district.

“FDI in retail will be a nightmare for the small scale traders as the arrival of multi-national companies would tilt the business in their favour within no mean time,” he said.

A section of traders observed fast in front of the railway station on the day with the slogan ‘FDI in retail not needed for the country'.

Members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) too came out to the streets with a demonstration in the evening pledging support to the grievances of small and medium scale traders.

Our Coimbatore Staff Reporter adds:

The bandh received mixed response in Coimbatore with a section of the traders downing their shutters on Thursday. Though many shops in the city were found open from the morning, all the shops in Mettupalayam and Pollachi were closed.

Shops on commercial streets such as Range Gowder Street, Raja Street, Oppanakara Street, Thiyagi Kumaran Street, Saibaba Colony vegetable market and other commercial complex were found closed. Shops that were opened in the morning were later closed following the request of the trade associations.

Shops in Papanaickenpalayam, Vadavalli, R.S. Puram, Sidhapudur, Vellalore, Ukkadam, Singanallur, Ondipudur and shops on Avinashi Road were found closed. Hotels, bakeries, textile shops, tea stalls were found open right from the morning.

Police maintained that majority of the shops and establishments functioned as usual. However, a section of the establishments remained closed.

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