Traders down shutters against Labour Officer’s stance

‘Plea not to hike loading charges not considered’

Shops and business establishments, including restaurants and some hotels, remained closed on Tuesday as members of the Kerala Vyapari Vyavasayi Ekopana Samithi (KVVES) staged a protest in the district against the alleged anti-trader stance of the Kerala Head Load Workers’ Welfare Board (KHLWFB).

Speaking after inaugurating a march to the office of the KHLWFB here on Tuesday, KVVES State vice president K.K. Vasudevan said that the samithi had submitted a letter six months ago to the District Labour Officer, who is in-charge chairman of the board, demanding retention of the current loading charges for the next two years in the wake of the floods in the district in the past two years and spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the official was yet to consider it.

Now, the official was trying to humiliate the traders, though the board was functioning with a 27% levy being paid by traders, Mr. Vasudevan said.

‘Poor representation’

Moreover, KVVES members were not given deserving representation while reconstituting the board recently, he said. If the chairman continued to adopt anti-trader policies, the organisation would take stringent steps like boycotting the board, he warned.

The protesters also raised slogans against the recent hike in traders’ licence fee in local administrative bodies and closure of the Thamarassery ghat road on the Kozhikode-Kollegal National Highway for maintenance work without arranging any alternative facility.

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