LAHORE: More trade and industrial associations have announced their support for separate shutdown and wheel-jam strike calls given by two groups of All Pakistan Anjuman-i-Tajiran (APAT) for Aug 1 and 5, respectively.

The Ferozepur Road Industrial Association in a meeting endorsed the Aug 1 strike call by the APAT (Khwaja Shafique Group).

Association chairman, Mubashir Butt and senior vice chairman Khwaja Shahzeb announced the decision. They said the wrong polices of Finance Minister Ishaq Dar would lead to the PML-N government’s downfall.

The All Pakistan Business Forum also endorsed the Aug 1 strike call and traders’ stance on tax on bank transactions.

Its president, Ibrahim Qureshi, said his forum supported all trade and industrial associations against the tax on bank transactions. He urged the government to announce incentives for the tax filers, exempting them from 0.3pc tax on bank transactions as it would encourage non-filers to come into the tax net and the government would achieve its targets aimed at expansion of tax net.

In a related development, more than 20 major markets in the city announced to back the shutdown call of the APAT on Aug 1.

The representatives of a large number of wholesale as well as retail markets of Lahore during a visit of APAT central secretary general Naeem Mir declared to keep businesses shut on Aug 1.

The markets which will remain closed included Anarkali, Mall Road, Panorama Centre, Hall Road, Beaden Road, Urdu Bazaar, McLeod Road, Brandreth Road, Shahalam, Rang Mahal Market, Kashmiri Bazaar, Ichhra, Liberty Market, Akbari Mandi, Badami Bagh Auto Market, Moti Bazaar, Sooha Bazaar, Dabbi Bazaar, Ferozepure Road and Multan Road.

APAT Punjab president Mehboob Sirki and Agha Adnan, Qaumi Tajir Ittehad Pakistan president Sheikh Mushtaq, Tariq Feroze, LCCI Azad Group chairman Raja Hassan Akhtar, Lahore Traders Alliance president Safdar Ali Butt, Khidmat Group chairman Babar Mehmood, Shahalam Market Board president Khwaja Aamir, Walled City Markets Board president Tahir Naveed, Lytton Road president Malik Nazim, Wahdat Road president Chaudhry Fayyaz, Hall Road president Shabbir Labha, Akbari Mandi president Anwar Bobi also accompanied Naeem Mir during his visit to city markets.

Lahore and Gujranwala chapters of the All Pakistan Textile Processing Mills Association endorsed the strike of Aug 5 announced by APAT (Khalid Pervaiz Group).

Published in Dawn, July 31st, 2015

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