LAHORE/KARACHI/RAWALPINDI: Traders across the country are observing a countrywide complete shutter down strike against the government after a hike in sales tax in the federal budget today.
Last week, the All Pakistan Anjuman-e-Tajran (APAT) had announced a nationwide shutter-down strike from July 13 against the government in several cities of the country for a hike in sales tax in the federal budget.
Traders in Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar are observing a shutter down strike along with those in Multan and DI Khan.
President of the Tariq Road Alliance said he was supporting the call for strike given by the All Pakistan Anjuman-e-Tajran (APAT) and the Tajir Action Committee. “All markets in Bahadurabad and Tariq Road will remain closed for business,” he said.
General Secretary of the APAT Naeem Mir said the business community was united and will observe a shutter-down strike today with full force. “The government was sparing no effort to divide the business community but in vain. “All kinds of business activities will remain closed throughout the country,” he said. Lahore, Karachi traders divided over strike called against taxes
In Lahore, the trader’s alliance will also observe a shutter-down strike however, chemist shops will remain open for business.
Markazi Anjuman-e-Tajran (Punjab) President Sharjeel Mir said traders were united countywide and will protest against the wrong government policies.
“The government will see the unity of traders on July 13. The business community has strongly rejected the budget and new taxes imposed by the FBR,” he added.
In Rawalpindi, trade bodies of the city have been divided on the issue of shutter-down strike against the imposition of taxes in the budget 2019-20. The leaders of three groups of Anjuman Tajran, including Shahid Ghafoor Paracha, Sharjeel Mir and Arshad Awan have announced to observe a strike today while another group led by Shahid Qayyum Mughal has said they will keep their businesses open today.
“We will observe a shutter-down strike on July 13 on the call of Markazi Anjuman Tajiran of the country,” Shahid Paracha, Sharjeel Mir and Arshad Awan said in a statement on Friday.
District President of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Traders Wing Shahid Qayyum Mughal said they wanted to give time to the government as the previous rulers had destroyed the economy.
He expressed the hope that due to the government’s prudent policies, the economy would be soon back on track.
The All Pakistan Anjuman-e-Tajran had announced a nationwide shutter-down strike from July 13. Photo: Geo News
In the tribal region, Steel Mills has been closed since July 1 impacting the livelihood of 10,000 workers.
Traders and businessmen have called a strike against the imposition of 17 per cent sales tax in the tribal districts as well, with as many as 35 steel mills reportedly shut down in the tribal regions. The president of the FATA Steel Mills Association has threatened to protest outside the provincial assembly if the tax is not withdrawn