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Aftermath of Article 370's abrogation; Bathindi Traders concerned over immediate losses, hopeful of bright future
8/21/2019 10:59:25 PM

Early Times Report

JAMMU, Aug 21: Even as people of Jammu and city are by and large supporting the abrogation of Article 370, the business in Jammu has taken a severe hit as most of the markets are witnessing a slowdown due to the restrictions imposed for few days and the simultaneous snapping of mobile internet facility in the city following the scrapping of Jammu and Kashmir's special status on August 5.
"The union government's decision to scrap special status and bifurcate the state has taken a heavy toll of the business as customers are not in a mood to buy valuables since they are paying attention to purchase essential commodities for households mainly due to disturbed situation prevailing in the city," said Sharief Hussain Malik, owner of an electronic gadgets showroom at Bathindi, an area in outskirts of Jammu city.
Malik said that the abrogation of Article 370 has its benefit as well as disadvantages. The future of small shopkeepers is under threat as big investors will pose a big challenge in the times to come.
While Rahil Rashid, proprietor of a Departmental Store in Bathindi, said that the restriction imposed after abrogation of Article 370 has surely affected the business in the area where only 10-20 percent of population is local and the rest comprises of outsiders adding that when consumers are not present who will make purchases.
"Bathindi has only 20 percent local population while all others who stay here are from Poonch, Rajouri, Kashmir, Leh, Kargil and Ladakh. The outsiders including students went back to their native places after scrapping of Article 370," said Rahil Rashid
"Business has slowed down due to the prevailing situation. The traders are not getting the return in proportion to what they had invested. Snapping of mobile internet facility has also contributed in the slump. POS machines are lying defunct due to no internet. The restoration of normalcy in business activity will take some time," he added.
Gazanfar, owner of a Furnishing House and Irfan Ahmad, owner of Readymade Garments showroom, said that the customers are hardly visiting the market under the present circumstances due to which the sales have dropped by 20 to 30 percent.
Shakti Singh, another Readymade Garments Showroom owner, said that the business is presently going through a rough patch as the daily sales which were as high as Rs 15000 to Rs 16000 has come down to only Rs 2000-3000 due to the restrictions and non-availability of mobile internet facility as people as well as merchants are not able to make or receive online transactions.
Singh further said that the abrogation of Article 370 is good for Jammu people and it will yield positive results in the future.
Ashish Sharma, owner of a Furniture Showroom, said that the business has badly hit but it will recover soon as soon as the complete normalcy is restored in the city adding that scrapping of Article 370 will prove a boon for the common man as well as the business community of Jammu.
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