The first day of the state-wide textile traders' bandh called to protest the implementation of VAT on textiles, brought business of this sector across the city to a complete halt on Tuesday. Most textile outlets in the Old City remained shut through the day while those that did open were forced to pull their shutters down.
Textile outlets in Patel market, Badi Chowdi, Sultan Bazaar and in Secunderabad joined the two-day bandh call (for November 15 & 16) given by the Andhra Pradesh Federation of Textile Traders Associations on November 9. "We ensured that all textile retails outlets were shut. We even kept a vigil in the evening to ensure that shops did not open, which happened during earlier bandhs," said a trader from the Old City adding, "We will ensure that the bandh is successful even on Wednesday."
Meanwhile, some textile traders from the city travelled to Warangal on Tuesday to attend the textile traders' meet organised by the federation to discuss their future course of action. A trader from Old City who was present at the meeting told TOI from Warangal: "We have sent out a clear message to the government that we will intensify our protest if we are forced to pay VAT on textiles." He added that the traders were amenable to paying VAT only when the whole country is subjected to it next year.
The closed shops in Hyderabad, however, proved beneficial for petty traders across the twin cities with many of them selling ready-made garments on the doorstep of big stores.