Saturday, October 21, 2017

Striking meat traders to meet commerce minister, city corporation officials Sunday

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2017-02-17 22:34:31 BdST


Getting authorities' call for discussion, the striking meat traders have not announced any fresh programmes protesting against 'extra' levy at Gabtoli cattle market and 'corrupt' city corporation officials.

Bangladesh Meat Traders' Association and Dhaka Metropolitan Meat Traders' Association, in a joint press conference on Friday, said the strike, which started in the capital on Monday, will continue until Saturday.

Sunday is 'Meatless Day' for Dhaka as per government announcement. The traders hinted that beef and goat meat would be sold on next Sunday after the strike. The price of chicken has gone up in Dhaka due to the strike.

The meat traders have also threatened to extend the strike countrywide if their demands are not met.

On Sunday, they will hold meetings with Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed at 11 am and with Dhaka North City Corporation at 2 pm.

"We are not announcing any new programmes. We hope our demands will be met through discussions," Bangladesh Meat Traders' Association Secretary General Rabiul Alam said at the conference call at Dhaka Reporters' Unity.

"But we will extend the strike across the country if the demands are not met," he added.

He claimed beef price would drop below Tk 400 a kilogram if the four-point demands are fully met. He also claimed the price would drop below Tk 300 a kg if the traders can import cattle legally from Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar.

The four demands include cancelling the lease of Gabtoli cattle market; trial of 'Kala Moija', who allegedly runs an illegal money transfer business or 'Hundi'; making accountable 'corrupt' chief executive officer and chief estate officer of Dhaka North City Corporation; and putting an end to syndicate of 'dishonest' tanners.

"A vested quarter is pickpocketing. We believe in customers after Allah, but now we slaughter them with the cattle for money," Rabiul said.