Just two days before the e-Trip system is scheduled to be launched in Punjab,Jalandhars traders and industrialists boycotted a meeting with Chief Parliamentary Secretary (CPS),Excise and Taxation,Saroop Chand Singla here today.
Singla,who was supposed to address issues on e-Trip,arrived at the venue two hours after the scheduled time. By then,the representatives of around 80 industrial and trade organisations had left the venue,feeling insulted and humiliated.
Sources said that the Excise and Taxation Department had sent messages to the trade and industrial organisations on Thursday inviting them to Circuit House Jalandhar for a meeting with the CPS and local excise officials at 11.00 am. Later they got another message changing the time to 11.30 am. A third message changed the venue to Hotel Sky Lark,which is opposite the Circuit House.
We reached the venue well in time. Around 12 noon,the district president for SAD G S Channi announced the meeting would start in 10-15 minutes. We waited till 12.45 pm but there was no more information, said Ravinder Dheer,member of Industrialists and Traders Joint Action Committee. At 1.00 pm we decided to boycott the meeting and left the venue.
The traders and industrialists had been called to discuss issues pertaining to VAT refund,C Form,etc.
Dheer said that already the state industry was reeling under huge pressures due to poor policies of the SAD-BJP government,and such irresponsible attitude of the authorities was like rubbing salt on wounds.
In the meanwhile,several senior Akali leaders,including Cantonment MLA Pargat Singh,MLA Adampur Pawan Tinu,MLA Nakodar Gurpartap Singh Wadala,G S Channi,hogged the limelight at a meeting meant for traders.
The industry representatives who came for the meeting included Gursharan Singh,Raj Kumar Shamra,Sanjay Kohli,Sukhwinder Singh Bagga,Gurmeet Singh Bitta,Ashok Mago etc.,all heads of various trade and industrial organisations.
Singla later explained that he was delayed by a traffic jam.
ANJU AGNIHOTRI CHABA