KARACHI: Traders have sought help from Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) against the highhandedness of police officers in dealing with shopkeepers.
Members of a delegation from Jama Alliance Market Association (JAMA), while expressing deep concerns over rising incidents of thefts in the Jama Markets and the poor behavior of police officers in dealing with shopkeepers, requested the Karachi Chamber to take up this serious issue with the high-ups in police department in order to put an end to the highhandedness of police officers.
They also sought KCCI’s help in deployment of women police officers at Jama Markets where incidents of thefts were widely being reported everyday and all of them were being carried out by women culprits.
The help was sought at a meeting during the visit of JAMA delegation to KCCI, which was led by Chairman JAMA Sheikh Muhammad Irshad. President KCCI Muhammad Idrees, Senior Vice President KCCI Abdul Rehman Naqi, Vice President KCCI Qazi Zahid Hussain, Chairman of KCCI’s Special Committee for Small Traders Majeed Memon and Managing Committee Members also attended the meeting.
Speaking on the occasion, Chairman JAMA Sheikh Muhammad Irshad pointed out that shopkeepers of Jama were worst sufferers of lockdowns and to date, they haven’t recovered from the losses, leading to closure of many shops. These shopkeepers have been facing immense hence, it was very necessary that the government should look into the possibility of extending interest-free financing facility to them so that they could stay afloat. “Jama Alliance Market Association can be engaged as guarantor in the process of interest-free financing and we will recommend only those trustworthy shopkeepers who would certainly payback all their debts”, he said, adding that this financing facility was desperately needed for survival of business at Jama Market which was the oldest market of the country.
While referring to anti-encroachment drive, he said that around 192 shops of Jinnah Market mostly engaged in frame-making and Dupatta (scarf) dying businesses were razed and to date, these displaced shopkeepers have not received alternate shops. KCCI should take up this issue with Sindh with a view to provide relief to perturbed shopkeepers and their families.
President KCCI Muhammad Idrees, in his remarks, informed that KCCI was in constant touch with Commissioner Karachi Iqbal Memon and Administrator Karachi Murtaza Wahab and Additional Inspector General Yaqub Minhas who will soon be visiting KCCI to discuss numerous issues. “We will invite JAMA members to these meetings where they will get a perfect opportunity to highlight their grievances directly in front of decision makers and seek resolution of their problems”, he added.
He assured that KCCI was always available round the clock to serve small traders and shopkeepers who can either get in touch with Office Bearers, Chairman Special Committee for Small Traders or Police Chamber Liaison Committee (PCLC) any time to get their law & order related issues resolved. “Any unlawful activity being carried out by police officers must also be brought to this Chamber notice in writing and we will make sure that no injustice is being done to any shopkeeper of Jama Cloth Market”, he added.
While referring to concerns expressed over encroachment drive, President KCCI informed that not a single representative from Jinnah Market has approached KCCI for relocation of their businesses to date. KCCI’s Special Committee for Small Traders under the supervision of Majeed Memon has ensured that alternate shops are allotted to displaced shopkeepers of various markets. “KCCI is ready to take up the problems suffered by shopkeepers of Jinnah Market but the shopkeepers must share details in writing with this Chamber so that we could take up this issue with Administrator Karachi during his forthcoming visit to KCCI”, he added.
He said that it has always been one of the first and foremost responsibility to give top priority to get small traders’ issues resolved in normal and extraordinary circumstances. “It was KCCI that kept demanding to ease restrictions during lockdown and it was this Chamber which convinced Sindh Government to lift lockdown restriction on Sunday”, he added.
Chairman Special Committee for Small Traders Majeed Memon said, “As KCCI has remained actively engaged to ensure smooth relocation of displaced businesses of encroachment drive, the affectees of Jinnah Market should not find themselves alone as we are always available to round the clock to help them out.
All the participants of the meeting paid glowing tribute to Late Siraj Kassam Teli for his relentless efforts towards resolving the issues being faced by the entire business and industrial community particularly those being suffered by small traders and shopkeepers.