Rajasthan's stone industry faces crisis over Gujjars protest

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Bayana (Rajasthan), May 27 : The flourishing stone industry in Bayana, in Rajasthan, is now facing a major crisis due to the ongoing Gujjar.

The non-availability of raw material due to disrupted road and rail traffic and shortage of labour is taking its toll on the industry.

"Our business is reeling from a financial crunch, as we cannot get the raw material due to road blockades and disruption in rail services. Traders cannot come here. Our payments are stuck because of this. There is a shortage of labour because most of them are from the Gujjar community," claimed Suneel, a businessman.

A number of labourers, who are daily wage earners, are the worst hit as they are stuck at the shut down factories.

"Because of this unrest, the factories are shut. We are facing a tough time as we are daily wage earners," said Vishnu, a labourer.

The stone factory owners are worried about their future. They fear that if the unrest continues, their factories would incur huge losses, which they feel, would take a long time to recover.

Rajasthan is the mainstay of the stone industry and has over 90 per cent of the country's marble, sandstone and flaggy limestone deposits along with a major share of granite and slate deposits spread over the entire state.

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