Vijay Goel

Business Standard- BJP reaching out to city traders through various initiatives: Union Minister Vijay Goel

Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections in Delhi, the BJP has gone all out to woo the city traders – the party's traditional vote bank – by reaching out to them through various initiatives, Union minister Vijay Goel said Monday.

Encouraged by the "huge success" of Rashtriya Vyapari Dhanyawad Mahasammelan at Talkatora stadium held last Friday, the party believes Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pro-trader announcements will offset the "negative publicity" generated by moves like sealing, demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax (GST).

Goel, who belongs to the traders community and has been busy in recent months in reaching out the city traders, was instrumental in holding the traders Mahasammelan addressed by the Prime Minister.

"Thousands of traders from the city as well as other parts of the country attended the Mahasammelan. Its success shows that traders in the country are still strongly backing the BJP," Goel told PTI.

The BJP Sankalp Patra promising a National Traders' Welfare Board, pension for all small shop-owners above the age of 60, accidental insurance for all GST-registered traders, merchant credit card, and collateral-free business loans of up to Rs 50 lakh to small and medium enterprises, show that the party cares for the traders in the country, he said.

In recent times, the Congress and ruling AAP in Delhi have tried to "misguide" traders through a "misinformation" campaign against demonetisation, GST and sealing drive in Delhi, Goel alleged.

"I have been meeting the traders for last few months and clarifying them about how the Modi government is working tirelessly for their welfare and growth. The National Traders Welfare Board proposed by our Sankalp Patra is an example of it," he said.

Goel, a two time Lok Sabha MP from the traders hub Chndni Chowk has been dealing on behalf of his party with the anger of traders hit by sealing drive undertaken by Supreme Court mandated monitoring committee through BJP ruled municipal corporations.

"The issue of sealing is under active consideration and it will be resolved through consultations with stakeholders after model code of conduct ends," Goel said.

Once the elections are over, I will raise the issue of sealing with the Centre, Delhi government, courts and the municipal corporations to provide respite to the traders in the city, Goel said.

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