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Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry fears come true, industrialists and workers stage day-long protest


Lahore, June 06, 2016 (PPI-OT): President of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry has urged the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) to stop the conversion plan of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate into residential colony.

In a statement issued here Monday, the LCCI President Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said that the LCCI fear has come true and thousands industrialists and industrial have taken to the streets and staged massive protest against LDA policies.

It is pertinent to mention here that hundreds of industrialists and workers on Monday blocked main Ferozepur Road, burnt tyres and chanted slogans against government for allowing LDA to establish residential colony at Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate.

“Unfortunately, LDA officials have never bothered to take the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry and industrialists of the area on board and put the survival of hundreds industrialists and thousands industrial workers on stake with a one stroke of pen”, the LCCI President said.

He said that at present when entire world is talking about industrial expansion to win the global market, LDA is utilizing its all energies for deindustrialization which would ultimately hit the national economy hard.

He said that Lahore Development Authority should keep in view the ground realities while taking such decision. He said that residential colony would not render any service to the economy of Punjab but demolition of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate would not only deprive millions of workers of their jobs but would also air message that this piece of land is not safe for doing business.

Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said that Punjab government should immediately take notice of the situation as forcefully implementation of LDA’s decision would also bring down the graph of government’s popularity.

He said that priority to residential colonies over industrial area is a matter of concern for the business community who is trying to play role for economic development of the country besides various challenges.

He said that it is the worst usage of Land Acquisition Act 1894 which is now eating up Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate where over hundreds industrial units are not only providing employment to the thousands workers but also bringing in precious foreign exchange.

Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said that industrial estates and free zones always attract local and foreign investment and contribute in economic development of any country. These make a vital contribution to the national exports besides generate huge employment opportunities. He said that Pakistan had already lost a number of international markets while the condition of both local and foreign investment is also precarious. In the present scenario when country is struggling to enhance exports, collapse of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate would further aggravate the situation.

The LCCI President said that Lahore Development Authority (LDA) have never bothered to take business community on board and started serving notice to the industrialists of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate.

He said that this act of Lahore Development Authority would waste the investment of billions rupees and turn the industrial units of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate into derrises of heap which would not raise the graph of unemployment but would also discourage the local investors and they would be compelled to shift their businesses to the other countries. He said that foreign investor would also loose their interest and shelves their plans to start businesses in Punjab.

The LCCI President also feared a surge in street crimes because of unemployment, saying that law and order situation is bound to aggravate if Lahore Development Authority implements its plan forcefully.
Sheikh Muhammad Arshad urged the Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shahbaz Sharif to take notice of this grave situation and act promptly to save the industry of Kahna Kacha Industrial estate and social fabric of Punjab.

For more information, contact:
Shahid Khalil
Information Department
Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)
Lahore -54000, Pakistan
Tel: +92-42-111-222-499
Fax: +92-42-36368854