Small-scale vendors protest against Reliance retail stores

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Dehra Dun, Sep 27 (UNI) Doon Udhhyog Vyapa Mandal and Laghu Vyapar Association today protested against the proposed Reliance Fresh outlets in the Doon Valley.

Members of Doon Udhyog Vyapa Mandal carried out 'talabandi' in several Reliance outlets and forwarded a memorandum addressed to Chief Minister B C Khanduri him that corporate and multinational companies not be allowed to open their outlets.

They have particularly opposed the opening of retail stores of fruit, vegetables, spices and milk products in the state.

In their memorandum the small fruit and vegetables vendors have sought closure of already operational retail stores of multinational companies and demanded that no water and power be supplied to them.

Spearheading the 'talabandi', State General Secretary of the Mandal Anil Goyal said Reliance was going to open five retail store in the name of 'Reliance Fresh' in this district of Uttarakhand that would sell mainly fresh fruit and vegetables.

He maintained that in future such retail outlets would be opened in every district of the state. Mr Goyal said these outlets would adversely affect the business of small fruit and vegetable vendors and push them out of business. He threatened that if the government allowed opening of these retail stores, his organisation would further intensify its agitation.

Meanwhile, small scale vendors, under the aegis of Laghu Vyapar Association, observed a day-long closure of their businesses in protest. Vendors displaying placards gathered at Nagar Nigam premises and chanted slogans against multinational companies. They staged a demonstration there and submitted a memorandum addressed to the Chief Minister and city Mayor in this regard.

Leading the protest, State President of the Association, Sanjay Chopra said the small scale vendors perceive the opening of 'Relaince Fresh' stores as a threat to their business.

He maintained that most of the population resided in rural areas and only 5 per cent of them could benefit from these stores. Mr Chopra advocated that the state government should rather focus on developing town city vending and hawking zones.

It should be noted here that only yesterday Reliance Fresh had terminated the service contracts of 870 employees in Uttar Pradesh.

The move is being seen as a consequence of the forced closure of the company's outlets in Lucknow, Ghaziabad and Noida by the district administration citing law and order problem.

UNI

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