Staff ReporterWednesday, January 16, 2013 - Karachi—Industrial activity in all the seven industrial estates of the city remained paralyzed because hundreds of people including small children and women gathered on different roads and staged sit-ins against Quetta carnage and in support of Hazara community demands.
The protesters blocked several main roads of the city which resulted in traffic jams. Beside traffic jams the transporters also withdrew their vehicles from the roads.
Very few people managed to report on duty but had left the workplace after some time.
The public transport such as goods carriers stayed off the roads because of fear of incidents of arson and torching of public and private vehicles. All economic and social activities remain paralyzed for the whole day. Some shopkeepers in residential areas and markets started opening their shops after 4pm.
The worst affected were industrial estates including Federal B Area, Korangi, SITE, Site Super Highway, Bin Qasim and North Karachi where workers’ turnout was negligible due to lack of public transport, which caused massive production losses.
Industrialists estimated Rs 2 to 3 billion loss in trade, revenue, export and industries on a single day closure. The situation proved particularly difficult for millions of daily wage earners in the city.
Site Association of Industry (SAI) Chairman Dr Arshad Vohra said almost 100 percent of the industries remained inoperative. More than 500,000 people were employed in 2,700 units in Site area in which 30-40 percent people were daily wagers, he added.
Korangi Association of Trade and Industry (Kati) Chairman Zubair Chahya said that not a single industrial unit in this industrial estate managed to operate as workers failed to report on duty, adding some of the industrial units managed to operate in early hours of the day but they too were forced to close down.