All gold,diamond and silver jewellery houses across Tricity will remain closed on Thursday,on account of a call given by the All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation (GJF). With response of Ministry of Fincance’s response to Federation’s demands awaited,the Federation decided to continue the strike. GJF is demanding a roll-back in some new provisions in the budget,which according to the jewellers,will have a negative impact on the sector. The industry is objecting on four points.
The first is the increase in the import duty of gold,which has been increased from Rs 200 to about Rs 1,200 per 10 grams in the last five months. This increases the price of gold for us. The disparity in price of gold internationally and in the local market will increase smuggling of the precious metal, said Rakesh Talwar,Regional Chairman GJF.
Talwar added that a major part of the manufacturing cost are the labour charges given to the craftsmen. The FM has announced service tax on the labour charges we pay the craftsmen. This will further increase the cost. In addition to this is the excise and the cash transaction tax imposed on us, he said. We are already paying Income Tax,VAT,service tax. It is unfair to burden the industry. There must be a roll back, he said.
The strike started last week. The Finance Minister is yet to respond to our demands. Due to extensive pressure from root level jewellers from across the country,the Federation decided to extend the strike for another day, informed Talwar.