Dedicated facility to redress traders’ grievances planned

Ministers P. Moorthy and P.T.R. P. Thiagarajan chairing a meeting with representatives of trade associations in Madurai on Friday.   | Photo Credit: G. Moorthy

Minister for Commercial Taxes and Registration P. Moorthy and Finance Minister P. T. R. P. Thiagarajan conducted a meeting with representatives of trade associations at the Collectorate here on Friday.

Mr. Moorthy said that after a gap of 11 years, his department had conducted a meeting with the representatives of trade associations. A dedicated facility would be set up to redress the grievances of traders. The government would ensure that traders and entrepreneurs did not face any problems in conducting their businesses.

Mr. Thiagarajan said that ₹9,000 crore had been earmarked from the State’s fund for providing COVID-19 financial assistance of ₹4,000 in two instalments to rice ration card holders. Around ₹1,200 crore had been allocated for facilitating free ride for women and transgenders in government buses.

Increasing tax rates on petrol and diesel had a severe impact on poor families. The Union government had imposed around 48% indirect and direct taxes. However, it was not distributed proportionally between the State and Union governments, he added.

Shopkeepers’ plea

Meanwhile, shopkeepers in the city said that closure of textile showrooms and other shops during the complete lockdown had severely affected them. The government must permit them to function with fixed timings so that they could revive their businesses, they said.

Tamil Nadu Textile Merchants Association secretary Ashraf Tayub said that there were around 4,000 textile shops in Madurai, including small and big large shops. Madurai, being the textile hub of South Tamil Nadu, the closure of shops for the past one-and-a-half months had severely impacted their businesses.

G. Raja, Manager of Saravana Stores, said this was the peak season for textile shops as they record around 30% of their annual sales. Sales of school uniform materials and clothes for weddings formed a major portion of revenue for textile shops. But the lockdown had deprived everything,” he said.

With no income, shopkeepers were struggling to pay electricity charges, rent and staff salary.

If the shops were not permitted to open for long, soon many would be forced to down shutters for good, said Mr. Tayub. “Hence, the government must permit the functioning of textile shops for a limited time period with compliance to COVID-19 safety precautions,” he said.

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Printable version | Jul 29, 2021 8:19:20 AM |

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