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‘Once bitten twice shy’: Karachi’s traders say won’t vote for parties responsible for violence in past

KARACHI: Karachi’s top traders on Friday spoke up about their preferences and priorities a week before the country votes for national and provincial assemblies on July 25, ARY News reported.

“Karachi’s traders have suffered a lot in the past especially between the years 2008 to 2013. All this was not done solely by criminals but some political parties backed them too. As they say ‘once bitten twice shy’, we will vote but not for those parties who were responsible for violence in the past,” said Atiq Mir, Chairman All Karachi Tajir Ittehad.

Mir, who is considered a top representative of the city’s traders, said that between 2008 to 2013, extortionism, target killing and violence brought theĀ  city’s once vibrant economic activities to a halt.

“We will not do this mistake of voting for those parties who were behind that monster which roamed this city’s streets between 2008 to 2013,” said the traders’ representative.

He was of the view that city has today regained its lost glory and the traders want the country’s economic hub to stay peaceful.

It is pertinent to note here that according to the Pakistan Institute for Peace Studies, at least 57 people were killed and nearly 300 injured in violence in Karachi from January 2013 until the election in May that year. This year, police say, just two murders have been reported.

The change is palpable in the city – people throng to shopping malls and restaurants until past midnight. In earlier years, the city would essentially shut down soon after dark.

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