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Nearly 30% businessmen in Surkhet displaced due to lockdown



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By Our Correspondent
Surkhet, Oct. 14: About 30 per cent entrepreneurs in the state capital Surkhet have been displaced from business due to lockdown and prohibition order enforced to prevent and control COVID-19 pandemic.
They have abandoned business due to non-payment of rent, wages of employees and workers and bank loans.
The tourism sector, hoteliers and industrialists of the Karnali State have been hit the hardest as the lockdown has been extended which was enforced from March 24 after the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.
President of the Hotel Entrepreneurs' Association Surkhet, Gorakh Rawat, said that the hotel business was most affected by the shutdown.
He said that now when the income is zero, the restaurant operators, like other entrepreneurs, are also suffering due to the burden of salary of the employees, rent, electricity and minimum cost of water.
According to him, about 1,400 hotels have been registered in Surkhet.
There are no actual figures of businesses closed forever, most of the hotels have been closed forever and the businessmen have been displaced, Rawat said.
According to him, about 5,000 hotel workers have lost their jobs after closure of many businesses.
He demanded that the federal, state and local governments bring various relief packages to revive the businesses, including hotels.
Laxman Kandel, general secretary of the Surkhet Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that many businessmen in Surkhet were not in a position to run shops due to the impact of COVID-19.
He informed that most entrepreneurs are now selling their shops as they are not in a position to pay the interest, staff expenses and house rent.
He claimed that some businessmen had been displaced and 30 per cent of them had left the business so far.
He complained that the state government had not been able to bring anything even though many businessmen had left the business in Surkhet.
"At least the state government could have brought a relief package if it thought for the benefit of the businessmen. But so far it has not been able to do so,” he said.
Karnali State president of the association Tarka Bahadur Shahi said that the lockdown had caused a loss of over Rs. 2 billion.
He said that most of the hoteliers could not run their hotels even though there were no reliable statistics in the state. 

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