A joint meeting of the traders of the twin cities was held under the chairmanship of Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry to discuss the decision of the government to close businesses 2 days in a week and close normal shops by 6:00 pm. Abdul Rehman Khan Vice President ICCI, Mian Akram Farid Chairman Founder Group, Ajmal Baloch President, Anjuman-e-Tajiran Pakistan, Kashif Chaudhry President Anjuman-e-Tajiran Pakistan, Malik Zaheer President Islamabad Small Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Shahid Ghafoor Paracha President Anjuman-e-Tajiran Punjab, Sheikh Hafeez President Anjuman-e-Tajiran Rawalpindi Cantt, Khalid Chaudhry Convener ICCI Traders Committee and Presidents and General Secretaries of all markets of Islamabad attended the meeting. The meeting unanimously passed a resolution calling upon the government to allow businesses to remain open from 10:00 am till Sehri for 7 days in the month of Ramadan as it was the month of peak season for business activities due to Eid shopping. They said that closing businesses at 6 pm and keeping the markets closed two days a week will cause irreparable damage to the business community while there will be less deaths from coronavirus and more deaths from poverty and hunger. Addressing the meeting, Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that the coronavirus has already reduced business activities by more than 50 per cent and in these circumstances, closing shops by 6:00 pm will also destroy the rest of the business activities, leaving the business community impoverished and severely damaging the economy. He said that businesses were operating at normal timings in Middle East, UK and many other countries, so imposing restrictions on businesses in Pakistan was not justified. He said that Ramadan was a peak season for business activities and it provided a good opportunity to the business community to recover some losses caused by Covid-19 pandemic. Therefore, he urged that the government should reconsider the new restrictions and allow the businesses to remain open from 10:00 am till Sehri for the whole week. Mian Akram Farid Chairman Founder Group, Muhammad Ejaz Abbasi former President ICCI, Ajmal Baloch President of Anjuman-e-Tajiran Pakistan, Kashif Chaudhry President of Anjuman-e-Tajiran Pakistan, Malik Zaheer President of Islamabad Small Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Sheikh Nadeem President of Rawalpindi Small Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Shahid Ghafoor Paracha President of Anjuman-e-Tajiran Punjab, Sheikh Hafeez President Anjuman-e-Tajiran Rawalpindi Cantt, Khalid Chaudhry Convener of ICCI Traders Committee and Presidents of various markets of Islamabad also spoke at the occasion and said that many businesses were on the verge of collapse due to the previous lockdowns. They said that the government has imposed new restrictions on business activities at the start of Ramadan, which would be disastrous for businesses. They feared that due to the new restrictions, shopkeepers would not be able to pay their rents and thousands of workers would lose their jobs, so the government should realize the seriousness of the situation and allow business activities to continue without restrictions. They vowed that the business community would ensure implementation of SOPs to curb the spread of Covid-19, so the government should reconsider its decision and lift restrictions to allow all businesses to remain open from 10:00 am till Sehri for 7 days a week. It would help the traders to cover some losses they have already suffered due to coronavirus and play a role in the economic revival of the country.