Textile shops in Erode, Salem remain shut

Textile shops in Erode downed their shutters on Monday owing to hike in yarn prices.

Textile shops in Erode downed their shutters on Monday owing to hike in yarn prices. | Photo Credit: M. GOVARTHAN

Condemning the steep hike in the prices of yarn, cloth merchants in Erode district began their two-day strike on Monday. Over 10,000 textile shops in the district remained closed as a result.

The strike was called by Erode Cloth Merchants’ Association that was supported by 25 textile associations including Erode Gani Market Daily and Weekly Textile Traders’ Association, Power Loom Cloth Merchants’ Association, Textile Traders’ Association, sizing owners, screen printing, handloom, garment exports and other associations across the district.

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Textile traders said that due to the hike in price of yarn regularly, their business was totally affected, rendering many workers jobless. Over 4,000 cloth merchants’ shops, around 1, 000 daily and weekly shops at Gani market, 2,000 textile shops at Ashokapuram, 150 shops in T.V.S. Street, 1,500 shops at Central Theatre market were participating in the strike.

The usually busy Eswaran Kovil Street, Thiruvenkatasamy Street, N.M.S. Compound, Agilmedu Street, Kamarajar Street and other streets where textile shops were located wore a deserted look.

Erode Cloth Merchants’ Association president K. Kalaiselvan told the media that prices of yarn continued to be on the rise in the last 18 months. “Yarn prices have almost doubled in one-and-half years,” he said and added that the price of 40s count cotton yarn increased from ₹200 per kg to ₹400 per kg now. The price of 30s count yarn increased from ₹170 per kg to ₹330 per kg while the price of 20s count yarn increased from ₹140 per kg to ₹240 per kg now. “The only way is to stop export of cotton and yarn and declare cotton as an essential commodity,” he said.

The president said that to seek the attention of both the Central and State government, the two-day strike had begun and claimed that transactions worth ₹100 crore would be affected in the district.

In Salem, fabric manufacturers began strike urging governments to take measures to control prices of yarn and cotton.

Members of Tamil Nadu Fabrics Manufacturers Association, Salem Dyeing Factory Owners Association, Salem Textile Manufacturers and Exporters Association and various other associations took part in the strike.

The manufacturers lamented that the price of one quintal of cotton has crossed ₹1 lakh and the price of cotton and yarn has been on an increasing trend for the last 18 months. The manufacturers complained due to increase in prices they are unable to continue production. They said that they are unable to meet existing orders or compete with China, Bangladesh, Vietnam in terms of pricing. The protesters said that Tamil Nadu uses 35% of total cotton production in the country and the price hike has severely affected the producers here.

The protesters demanded that production of cotton must be increased in State and cotton and yarn must be moved to essential list to prevent hoarding of goods. They demanded that export of yarn must be temporarily suspended and no import tax must be imposed on yarn.

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Printable version | May 17, 2022 12:54:06 am |