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Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry for new SOPs for industry to avoid fanaticism, violence

Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry for new SOPs for industry to avoid fanaticism, violence

GUJRAT: The business fraternity of Sialkot has decided to formulate new standard operating procedures (SOPs) for production operations in factories to avoid tragic incident like lynching of a Lankan factory manager in future.

Moreover, the export-based companies having foreign nationals among their staff have also been asked to take special security measures for the foreigners, besides training security guards to cope with any such situation in future.

An emergency meeting of the business leaders of Sialkot was held at Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) office on Saturday with SCCI president Mian Imran Akbar in the chair. The meeting was also attended by the chairmen of all the trade and export associations.

Sources said the meeting participants were worried how they would explain the lynching incident to their foreign customers across the globe, particularly in the western countries.

Especially focuses on security of foreigner employees

SCCI President Mr Akbar told Dawn the scars the Friday incident left on the export-based industry of Sialkot might take a long time to heal. However, he said, the local businessmen were committed to steer the industry out of the situation with some targeted measures and discussed various proposals “that could not be discussed in the media until such measures were in place”.

He said that it was decided in the meeting to arrange lectures of religious scholars and Ulema for counseling of factory workers, sensitizing them about the scantily of human life and teachings of Islam.

Mr Akbar said though he could not share any data about the number of foreigners working in Sialkot-based industry, all the foreigners had been doing office jobs, and none of them was part of manufacturing or working on machines.

Besides, he said the owners of the factories employing foreigners had also been asked to make special security arrangements for such staffers.

To express solidarity with the whole Sri Lankan nation and the family of the deceased, Priyantha Diyawadan, a condolence reference was also organised at the SCCI.

It is learnt that some businessmen have suggested to the SCCI and trade associations to not allow display of any kind of religious material etc inside the factories’ work stations and offices to avoid such a situation in future.

Speaking at the reference, the SCCI president said the incident did not represent the industry’s usual environment, neither it defines the people of Sialkot. He hoped the exports-based city would rise from this and would continue to portray a positive image of Pakistan.

He said the SCCI condemned the barbaric act of violence resulting in tragic death of a Sri Lankan citizen working in Pakistan, urging the government and the law enforcement agencies to crackdown on all the perpetrators and inciters involved in the ugly incident and bring them to justice.

Expressing solidarity with the bereaved family, he said December 03, 2021, would go down as a dark day in the history of Sialkot that always showed tolerance and religious harmony.

Mr Akbar said there was no place for fanaticism and violence in society and that the miscreants involved in such wicked acts did not belong to any religion, caste, or creed.

He said late Diyawadana was a thorough professional known for his stern production standards and that the personal vendetta on part of some labourers in the garb of “religious sentiments” led to his lynching.

Published in Dawn, December 5th, 2021

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