7 Crore Small Businesses To Join Bharat Bandh Today, In Protest Against Walmart-Flipkart Deal

| September 28 , 2018 , 08:22 IST

Around 7 crore small businesses across the country are expected to participate in the 'Bharat Bandh' on Friday called by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) in protest against Walmart's acquisition of retail major Flipkart and FDI in the retail sector.

"All commercial markets across the country will remain closed and no commercial activity will take place. About 7 crore small businesses all over the country are expected to participate in the bandh," CAIT said in a statement.

In Delhi, a 'Trade Bandh' will also be observed as a part of the 'Bharat Bandh'  in which all wholesale and retail markets will remain closed. The Delhi traders are also demanding immediate promulgation of an ordinance to stop sealing of shops.

ALSO READ: Walmart Completes Acquisition Of 77% Stake In Flipkart

"Besides FDI, the Delhi Trade Bandh is also focussing on sealing issue demanding the government to bring an ordinance to protect Delhi from sealing. To lodge their strong protest, the Delhi traders in large numbers will also join a Protest Dharna at Jantar Mantar on Friday displaying their anguish and resentment," CAIT said in a statement.

Prominent markets in Delhi are expected to be closed on Friday, including Connaught Place, Chawri Bazar, Chandni Chowk, Sadar Bazar, Kashmiri Gate, Pahar Ganj, Karol Bagh, South Extension, Greater Kailash, Amar Colony, Green Park, Khan Market, Rajouri Garden, Tilak Nagar, Laxmi Nagar, Vikas Marg, Lajpat Nagar and Shahdara.

The All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) has also announced a day-long nationwide strike on Friday in protest of the Centre's move to regularise online pharmacies, stating e-pharmacy poses threat to their business and could lead to the risk of drug abuse.

ALSO READ: Delhi Traders Go On Strike Against Sealing, To Hold Rally At Ramlila Maidan

The Union Cabinet had in January decided to allow 100 percent foreign direct investment (FDI) in single-brand retail under automatic route, and also eased local sourcing norms.

On August 18, US-based retail giant Walmart announced that it had completed the acquisition of 77 percent stake in India's home-grown Flipkart by investing $16 billion. The announcement came after the approval of Competition Commission of India (CCI) to Walmart to acquire the majority stake in Flipkart.

The entry of the Walmart-Flipkart combine in the Indian market would pose a threat to small businesses across the country.