Jewellers, bullion traders resume strike

: Keeping in view the ongoing Parliament session, jewellers and bullion traders in the Capital on Monday restarted their strike against the Centre’s proposal of levying one per cent excise duty on non-silver jewellery. Jewellers also staged a protest at Jantar Mantar extending support to the strike call given by different associations in the country.

The three-day strike was decided upon to put pressure on Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for a rollback of the policy. “Every jeweller in the city has agreed to participate in the strike. This is the right time to register our protest as the Parliamentarians are at work,” said Yogesh Singhal, who is general secretary of the All India Jewellers’ Action Committee which was constituted on April 5 to fight for the cause.

On Monday, The Hindu found most of the jewellery shops in the Capital to be closed. “But that is also because most markets in Delhi like Lajpat Nagar and Karol Bagh remain shut on Monday,” said Krishan Lal Alreja, regional manager (North), All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation (GJF). The federation, this time, has maintained distance from the strike. It had also temporarily called off the 42-day strike on April 13 after the government’s assurance that there will be no harassment by excise officials.

“The GJF backed out from a similar protest in 2012 as well. That is because only big corporates of the industry dominate the federation which automatically corners the small shops and traders,” said Ashok Sethi of East Delhi Jewellers’ Association.

However, Ashok Minawala, Director at GJF, said, “We are in negotiations with the government. The latter has already issued three circulars, and will soon come out with a notification over simplification of the implementation of excise duty on non-silver jewellery.”

The Centre has constituted a panel under former Chief Economic Advisor Ashok Lahri to look into the demands of jewellers. The panel will look into issues related to compliance procedure for the excise duty, including records to be maintained, forms be filled, operating procedures, and other relevant issues.

Centre forms panel under former Chief Economic Advisor to look into demands of jewellers

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Printable version | Dec 5, 2021 2:00:51 AM |

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