Members of the Federation of Traders Welfare Association (FRTWA) met Shiv Sena party chief Uddhav Thackeray at his residence Matoshree on Sunday and claimed that they have been the worst hit by the demonetisation decision and are suffering. However, the meeting has to be seen in the context that Sena was dumped by Gujaratis en masse during the previous elections and traders are mostly from this community.
The FRTWA, along with Rajkumar Bafna of Shiv Sena, took a delegation of around 25 people — shopkeepers, AHAR restaurant owners, members of the transport association, Thane jilla wholesale vyapari association, Vasai industries association and other associations of Mumbai — to meet Mr Thackeray. They claimed the market business has suffered tremendously and fell by 50 per cent.
The traders have claimed that they welcome the Prime Minister’s decision to abolish old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, from the Indian market, but due to this decision, business all across India is badly affected.
Traders have demanded there should be some announcement from the government of some “tax package” to the people of India in terms of reducing the slab of income tax and lowering the VAT percentage till GST is introduced. They said this should be done so that the morale of the people is boosted and everyone can unite and remove the black money menace and fight terrorist activities.
“A memorandum was given to Uddhav Thackeray and he has assured the traders that he will take up our demand with the Centre and with chief minister of Maharashtra,” said Viren Shah, the chief of FRTWA.
However, Mr Shah had campaigned for AAP and against BJP during the last elections. Since the last one-week, though, he was seen campaigning in favour of the demonetisation decision and on Sunday met Mr Thackeray.
The Sena also latched on to it because in the last few months it has come across as anti-Gujarati. This includes the editorial that had been carried in Saamana, the party’s mouthpiece, that was deemed to be anti-Gujarati. After the affair, the Thackerays had distanced themselves from it.