Around seven lakh business establishments and 3000 commercial markets of Delhi, including Chandni Chowk, Connaught Place and Lajpat Nagar, will remain closed on 28 March in protest against the ongoing sealing drive which began in December with the sealing of some major shops and eateries in posh Defence Colony.

The traders will hold a rally at Ramlila Ground to demand that the government protect trade and traders from sealing.

According to sources, many traders across Delhi will not send their children to school and colleges on 28 March as a mark of protest. The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) and All Delhi Traders, Vyapari and Workers Association haveshall jointly organise the rally on the occasion of Delhi trade bandh.

CAIT secretary general Praveen Khandelwal while addressing a press conference on Monday, informed that trade and commerce in Delhi will remain completely closed on 28 March and both wholesale and retail markets will observe bandh.

More than 3000 commercial markets of Delhi, including Chandni Chowk, Connaught Place, Karol Bagh, Sadar Bazar, South Extension, Rajouri Garden, Kamla Nagar, Vikas Marg, Greater Kailash, Chawri Bazar, Ashok Vihar, Rohini, Kirti Nagar, L:ajpat Nagar, Amar Colony, Kalkaji, Janakpuri, Laxmi Nagar, Gandhi Nagar, Krishna Nagar, Mandoli, Loni Road, Paharganj, Green Park andKashmiri Gate. will remain closed.

The transport & and logistics sector has also reportedly extended its support to the bandh and all transport companies shall also remain closed.

The Convenor of the rally claimed separate arrangements shall be made for drinking water and seating of children and women at the rally. More than 300 volunteers will be deployed at different places in rally to ensure security. he said a large number of CCTV cameras have also been installed.

Khandelwal alleged that the Supreme Court-constituted monitoring committee had adopted an arbitrary approach in matters related to sealing and was overreaching its powers.

“The trades have been denied the benefit of fundamental provisions of the MCD Act,1957. Neither any show cause notice nor opportunity of placing defense is being given to traders,” he lamented.

He said that in last three months business in Delhi had dropped by 40 per cent and if situation continued, traders would be left with no alternative but shift their businesses to neighbouring cities. That will cause huge revenue loss to Delhi government and infrastructure of Delhi will be greatly destroyed, he said.

The traders have demanded that the government bring a moratorium on sealing for at least one year and for that purpose a Bill in the current session of Parliament or an ordinance should be brought.

They also suggest that Chief Minister should bring a Bill to stop sealing in Assembly and forward it to the Centre for approval and also notify 351 roads pending since for a long time.