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Private banks close and scarcity of daily goods

Written by: Staff
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Kathmandu, April 17 (UNI) Prices of daily goods and petroleum products soar due to scarcity while private banks closed down their services in Kathmandu and other parts of the mountainous nation on the 12th day of the movement against king Gyanendra.

There is scarcity of petroleum products and the price of daily goods has gone up due to the general strikes and movement for the last 12 days.

The price of fresh vegetable and meat has doubled.

''There is no transport for the last few days and how can we supply the daily needs,'' Rajendra Shrestha, a local retailer, said.

''The price has increased significantly and it will go up,'' he added.

The private banks completely stopped their services bringing the banking system to a stand till at the request of the trade unions affiliated to the major political parties.

''We have closed down banking services due to ongoing situation.

We regret the inconvenience,'' Nepal Investment Bank said in a notice.

''Today we met the bankers and staff of all private and JV banks personally and convinced them to join the protests,'' Kantipur quoted Premal Khanal, General Secretary of the bank employees association.

Employees of public sector financial institutions, including Rastriya Banijya Bank (RBB), Nepal Bank Limited, Agricultural Development Bank and Employees Provident Fund have continued the protest.

Meanwhile, the government employees have also joined the movement.

''A noble rebellion and pen down alone are not enough to restore democracy so all civil servants should take to the streets,'' a joint statement by the Union and Nepal Government Employees Organisation said.

Civil employees, as members of a group receiving salary from taxpayers' money, are obliged to support the people's movement for democracy, president of the Organisation Milan Bhattarai is quoted as saying.

''We have not joined the service under anyone's grace or blessing, neither are we servants of a single person,'' Mr Bhattarai.

Thousands of people have been protesting demanding an end to the autocratic rule in the Himalayan kingdom for the last 12 days defying curfew and ban against such rallies.

UNI XC SC DS1406

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