Hyderabad

A civic body polls that made trade, industry take note

Few civic body polls perhaps have generated as much interest among trade and industry as the GHMC elections scheduled to be held on Tuesday.

A segment focused on growth and one that seemingly prefers to maintain distance from aspects not directly concerning business, it appears to have reasons to sit up this time. The high-decibel campaign, intensive canvassing by ruling TRS and national level BJP leaders wooing voters of the 150 wards of GHMC apart, the trade and industry view the polls as an opportunity to amplify its issues, both existing and more recent.

Figuring in the list are issues such as payment of pending incentives to industries as well as relief packages for businesses, in the form of waivers, to help soften the blow dealt by a raging pandemic.

But it is not just about resolutions of issues beyond the purview of GHMC, but also those directly concerning the civic body. Setting up of multi-level parking on government land, facilities for pedestrians as well as removal of encroachments and ensuring green corridor on key roads with coordinated traffic signals are some issues Telangana State Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Traders president Prakash Ammanabolu listed.

An umbrella body of trade associations, the Federation is demanding waiver of municipal tax on commercial properties as also the electricity minimum charges for the period when businesses remained shut on account of the lockdown.

The TRS has promised, in its manifesto, waiver of minimum demand energy charges to commercial and industrial power consumers for the COVID lockdown period (March to September), and exemption from motor vehicle tax for the first two quarters of 2019-20 to all transport vehicles.

Andhra Pradesh Automobile Dealers Association president Bhadresh C.Baldev said user friendly infrastructure, especially good roads, and a peaceful environment to conduct business are what ultimately matter to the trade. He said this pointing out how it took months for the road from Moazzam Jahi Market to Afzalgunj to be repaired.

Federation of Telangana Chambers of Commerce and Industry president Ramakant Inani underscored the need for a reduction in Trade Licence Fee and the government clearing pending incentives due to industries. Such local body elections should be fought on an agenda of development, infrastructure, roads, stability and law and order, said K.Sudhir Reddy, Telangana Industrialists Federation president. These are main issues, he said, adding “as an industrialist I prefer it should be a safe city where my investment and workers are safe, and customers come to Hyderabad without any problem.”

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Printable version | Jan 16, 2021 2:56:47 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/a-civic-body-polls-that-made-trade-industry-take-note/article33216291.ece

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