Punjab Cong for protection to local shopkeepers against Reliance

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Chandigarh, Oct 11 (UNI) The Punjab Congress has demanded protection for the local retail and wholesale merchants in the face of the 'onslaught' by Reliance and other corporate houses that have opened retail oputlets in the border state.

''A balancing policy should be adopted, wherein the local shopkeepers do not suffer at the hands of the coporate houses'', Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Rajinder Kaur Bhattal said while reacting to the reported statement of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal asking Reliance and other big business houses to quit the retail field as they were making it an unlevel playing ground.

Refusing to toe the line of Mr Badal, the Congress leader told mediapersons that some sort of framework should be devised for providing protection to the local shopkeepers. '' We just cant ask the big companies to quit, as it will send a wrong signal to other companies and would effect investment in the state'', she said while refusing to elaborate on the issue any further.

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