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Monday, 13 July 2020

Low footfall, fixed expenses send shop owners packing in Karnal

Parveen Arora

Tribune News Service

Karnal, July 12

Far from breaking even due to low footfall of customers and high amount of fixed expenses, over 20 persons had to shut their businesses in the city.

Due to the prevailing slowdown in the economy, most of the restaurateurs and shopkeepers selling mobiles and garments were forced to take this step.

A 30-year-old Nikhil had invested his father's hard-earned money to fulfill his dream of opening a restaurant in Model Town, but he never imagined that he would have to close it so soon. The burden of fixed expenses, such as rent, electricity charges and salary of the employees, left him with no option, except to shut down the restaurant.

"I have invested a lot of money in the business, and had hoped of good returns. However, with the prolonged and unprecedented lockdown, all my dreams and hopes have been dashed. It would cost me over Rs 1 lakh to pay the rent and salary of the staffers, and Rs 7,000 to Rs 13,000 for electricity and food. With no income, the fixed expenses of running the business were draining my financial resources," said Nikhil.

Likewise, a 36-year-old man had to shut down his mobile store in the city. He said: "I had to close my mobile store in the city, as I was unable to pay the high rent."

While some have shut down their businesses, others are on the verge of closing down their business operations. "I have been running a garment shop on the Kunjpura road for the last six years, but the prevailing situation has got me thinking if I should close my store. With zero income, to pay rent and salaries of the staff is like a nightmare to me," said a shopkeeper.

A couple of shopkeepers have shifted their establishments to other locations to cut down on their rent. "I was running a restaurant in Sector 12, but the monthly rent of Rs 53,000 burnt a hole in my pocket. Since the dine-in facility has been allowed in restaurants under Unlock 1.0, I have decided to shift my establishment to another location to cut down on my rent," said a restaurant owner of the city.

from The Tribune

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