Lahore - The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has urged Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif to shelve the Lahore Development Authority’s (LDA) plan to convert Kahna Kacha Industrial area into a residential society saying that it would not only snatch jobs of thousands of industrial workers but also lead to bankruptcy of hundreds of industrialists.

These views were expressed by LCCI President Abdul Basit while talking to the delegation of Kahna Kacha industrial area led by Mahmood Akhter. Basit said that priority to residential colonies over industrial area is a matter of concern for the business community.

“Punjab chief minister and MNA Pervez Malik should take immediate notice of the LDA move as it is a bad policy decision that is bound to hit directly on the economy of the Punjab by applying reverse gear to the government efforts aimed at progress and prosperity. It would also bring down the graph of the government popularity, therefore Punjab CM should shelve the plan of sacrificing the Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate for the sake of residential scheme as this initiative would result in dire consequences”, the LCCI president added.

He said that not only the industry but the government would also be the looser, as closure of hundreds of industrial units of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estates would cause huge loses to the national exchequer in term of taxes and utility bills etc. The Punjab government should well aware of the fact that residential colonies cannot be important than industrial clusters, he added.

He said that it is the worst usage of Land Acquisition Act 1894 which is now eating up Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate, where over hundreds industrial units are not only providing employment to the thousands of workers but also bringing in precious foreign exchange.

Basit said that industrial estates and free zones always attract local and foreign investment and contribute in economic development of any country, adding that these make a vital contribution to the national exports besides generate huge employment opportunities.

He said that Pakistan had already lost a number of international markets, while the condition of both local and foreign investment is also precarious. In the present scenario when the country is struggling to enhance exports, collapse of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate would further aggravate the situation, he added.

The LCCI president regretted that LDA have never bothered to take business community on board and started serving notice to the industrialists of Kahna Kacha Industrial Estate.