Walmart ruining small businesses: Wade Rathke

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Mumbai, Apr 29 (UNI) International anti-Walmart crusader and founder of the non-profit organisation, Association of Community Organisations for Reform Now (ACORN), Wade Rathke today said big players like Walmart should not be allowed in a economy like India.

He opined that with the entry of such business houses, the small businessmen will lose their livelihood as has been the case in many other countries like the US.

Mr Rathke is in the country to lend his support to the small traders against the might of big players like Walmart, Metro and Reliance Fresh.

''Walmart has destroyed livelihoods and adversely affected communities with their model of big bix trading,'' Mr Rathke alleged at a press conference here.

Mr Rathke said the Indian government should allow such big players only after understanding their long term plans and should have a level playing field in the industry.

''Walmart wants the 300 million dollar Indian retail market, and the entry in the Indian market is just a beginning in that direction,'' Mr Rathke said.

Mr Dilip Kumar, President of the Vyapar Rozgar Suraksha Samiti, said that the government has promised that there would not be FDI in retail, but big players like Metro and Bharti Retail, a fully owned subsidiary of WalMart are retailing the goods, with government turning a blind eye towards them.

''The small traders in the area have been forced to shut down their shops, as they cannot face the competition,'' Mr Kumar said.

Mr Kumar said the big players have a policy of selling goods at a very low price for a period, which the small traders cannot afford and will be forced to shut down, after which the price will be increased by the big retailers.

The small retailers along with Mr Rathke have planned to oppose the entry of the big retailers in the country and will agitate if required, Mr Kumar said.

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