Srinagar: Kashmir gold dealers and workers who are on an indefinite strike since March 2, on Saturday carried out a massive protest demanding the roll back of excise duty announced by New Delhi in its recent budget.
The two main associations here, All Kashmir Gold Dealers and Workers Association along with Kashmir Gold Jewellers Association (Anjumaan E Zargaraan) and gold workers assembled at Hari Singh High Street and later marched towards Press Enclave, raising slogans against this new tax.
The protesters called for an immediate roll back of this ‘unfair’ tax on this sector, besides repealing of a new government norm that makes it mandatory for customers to quote PAN details on gold purchases worth Rs 2 lakh and above.
The protesters shouted slogans against the Finance Minister Arun Jaitely saying that the aim of brining such laws was to ruin this sector.
They also held placards displaying ‘Roll Back Black Laws’’ and ‘Abolish Excise Tax’.
Talking to Kashmir Reader President of Gold Dealers and Workers Association Kashmir Bashir Ahmad Rather, said that bringing such laws into force is only going to add to the miseries of thousands of people associated with this sector.
He said that such norms will automatically add interference of officials in our trade that ultimately will be detrimental for overall growth of this sector.
“Apart from goldsmiths thousand workers in manufacturing sector are going to suffer because of these stringent laws,” he said
Also General Secretary of the Anjumane-e-Zargaran Muhammad Iqbal Shah told Kashmir Reader that, government from time to time has been bringing in laws that not favorable for promoting of this gold trade.
He lamented the fact that on one hand the government is promoting ‘Make in India’ concept and other hand it is destroying the already established gold and jewellery trade.
“There are too many taxes in already being imposed on us and putting in any additional burden will crumble us,” he said adding that they will be continuing with their protest till government rolls back the new tax laws.