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Delhi traders observe protest week

The coming week called the "Sealing Chetna Saptah" will see marches, hunger strikes and torch rallies.

india Updated: Dec 04, 2006 17:23 IST

Traders in the capital started a week-long protest on Monday as civic authorities continued their sealing drive against illegal commercial establishments.

"The court has extended relief to nearly 20,000 traders who had filed affidavits, but what about the other 500,000 traders. We are holding the week-long protest across the capital to draw the attention of the centre and the Delhi government," said Praveen Khandelwal, secretary general of the Confederation of All Indian Traders.

Over 500 trade bodies are holding a meeting in Hari Nagar, west Delhi.

The coming week called the "Sealing Chetna Saptah" will see protest marches, hunger strikes and torch rallies in several parts of the city.

Several meetings will be held through the week in different markets of the capital where political leaders will also be invited to express their solidarity with traders.

The traders' body also demanded that Urban Development Minister S Jaipal Reddy intervene and stop the sealing drive as "he had already assured the Parliament that the Delhi Master Plan 2021 will be implanted by January 31, 2007".

Traders are also to meet Minister of State for Urban Development Ajay Maken to put across their immediate concerns.

The Supreme Court mandated sealing drive resumed last month and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has sealed over 2,000 commercial establishments in residential areas so far.

In November, the apex court had dismissed three petitions by the central government and the MCD with an appeal to stop the sealing drive. However, it extended relief to nearly 20,000 traders who had filed affidavits assuring that they would not misuse their premises for commercial activities till January 31, 2007.

It also exempted 1,700 schools from the ambit of sealing till the next academic session in April.

First Published: Dec 04, 2006 12:40 IST