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ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad Restaurants Association (IRA) held an emergency meeting, on Monday, to review the deteriorating economic situation of the restaurant industry across the country.

During the meeting, the chairman IRA said that restaurants have been facing unnecessary closures for the last one and a half years, due to which several restaurants have been closed permanently. The reason for the emergency meeting is the announcement of closures by some more restaurants.

However, there is no concrete research on the spread of coronavirus from restaurants around the world.

He said that all the business sectors are conducting their activities smoothly with or without corona SOPs but only restaurants are facing closure on Saturdays and Sundays.

The NCOC has to allow this industry to open up with SOPs or tell once to close the business permanently.

During the meeting, the president of the IRA said that huge political activities are going on across the country in violation of SOPs.

All kinds of mass ceremonies are also being organised at the government level but only restaurants are restricted to operate.

Insane logic is being peddled that a family is not allowed to sit at a table and eat. This injustice will no longer be tolerated.

He said that if a restaurant violates SOPs, only that restaurant should be closed but the government shuts down the entire industry.

The IRA demanded the government to immediately address grievances include restrictions to open restaurants on Saturdays and Sundays and indoor dining, should be lifted immediately. The decision to close restaurants at 10pm should also be withdrawn.

The IRA assures compliance of Covid SOPs.

Khurram Khan also said, “if the government did not listen to our demands, there would be a massive protest outside the NCOC on Saturday, September 18, and owners and employees will participate”.

The meeting also reviewed the severe damage done to the restaurant industry due to wrong policies of some elements present in the NCOC. The meeting also expressed serious concerns over the extraordinary financial benefits to foreign food delivery service companies/E-commerce from the closure of restaurants across Pakistan.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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