Delhi traders to hold mega rally on 28 March, will urge Centre to bring ordinance to stop sealing drive

New Delhi: Around seven lakh business establishments and over 3,000 commercial markets of Delhi including Chandni Chowk, Connaught Place and Lajpat Nagar will remain closed on 28 March as traders will hold a mega rally to demand protection from the sealing drive.

Representational image. News18

Representational image. News18

Besides traders and their employees, families of businessmen will also participate in the rally to be held at the Ramlila grounds, Praveen Khandelwal, general secretary of the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said on Monday.

Traders across Delhi will not send their children to school and colleges on that day as a mark of protest, he said.

The CAIT and All Delhi Traders, Vyapari and Workers Association have jointly organised the rally and have given a call for Delhi Trade Bandh demanding that the Centre bring a bill or an Ordinance to stop the sealing.

Khandelwal said the Delhi Government should also pass a bill in the current Assembly session for a moratorium on sealing and forward the same to the Centre for its approval.

"Trade and commerce in Delhi will remain completely closed on 28 March and both wholesale and retail markets will observe trade bandh.

"More than 3,000 commercial markets of Delhi including Chandni Chowk, Connaught Place, Karol Bagh, Sadar Bazar, South Extension, Rajouri Garden, Chawri Bazar, Lajpat Nagar, Laxmi Nagar, etc will remain closed. Transport and logistics sector has also extend its support and all transport companies shall also remain closed," Khandelwal said.

He charged that the monitoring committee has adopted an arbitrary mood in the matter of sealing and trades are being denied the benefit of fundamental provisions of the MCD Act,1957.
Neither any show cause notice nor opportunity of placing defence is being given to traders, he further charged.

"The trade and economy of Delhi is badly affected and in the last three months business has dropped by 40 percent. If this continues, traders in Delhi will be left with no option but to shift their business to neighbouring cities which will cause huge revenue loss to Delhi government," Khandelwal said.

Khandelwal alleged that all three MCDs were involved in a Conversion Charge scam and demanded the Centre institute an inquiry to find out what happened to thousands of crores of rupees collected from traders as conversion charges.

It is noteworthy to mention that the amount was to be kept in an Escrow Account and should have been spent on development of parking and infrastructure in markets.

"Not even a single rupee has been spent on these activities and funds have been diverted for other purposes. Its a clear breach of trust and misappropriation of funds and as such inquiry is demanded and stern action should be taken against erring officials" he said.

Traders in the national capital have been hit hard after the building department of the municipal corporations had started sealing business establishments for non-payment of conversion charges, encroachment, and illegal construction on the instructions of the Supreme Court-appointed monitoring committee.

Thousands of shops have been sealed since last December.

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Updated Date: Mar 26, 2018 16:24:47 IST

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