Ludhiana, April 5, 2016: Shri Avtar Singh, President & Shri Upkar Singh Ahuja, General Secretary, Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU), Ludhiana in a joint statement released today urged the Union Government not to impose Excise Duty on Jewellery which has been imposed in the recent Budget presented by Finance Minister Mr. Arun Jaitly as it is not possible to implement practically. The President said that CICU has written a letter to Finance Minister, Union Government requesting him to roll-back the Imposition of Excise Duty on Jewellery proposed in the Budget.
Shri Upkar Singh Ahuja mentioned that Jewellers give gold to Small Shop Keepers (Swarankar), who make ornaments (jewellery items) of gold. It is a traditional practice since centuries. Normally such small shopkeepers have only 3 to 10 workers for doing the designing/art work. They operate the business without official staff.
He further said that the imposition of Excise Duty has led to certain documentary hassles such as keeping and maintaining of Excise Duty records as per Form 57-F (as applicable on job work). It is practically not possible for these small shopkeepers and thus, it will lead to confrontation between Jewellers, Small Shopkeepers & Excise Department.
He also stated that Gold Trading Community is not so much against the amount of Tax that is being levied, but they are protesting against the way it is being levied i.e. through the Excise Department. Also they are against the Compliance Procedure for the Excise Duty which includes the records to be maintained, forms to be filled-in, operating procedures and other relevant aspects which are not possible in practical for these small shopkeepers.
He added that if the Government wishes to generate revenue then the easy way is to levy surcharge of a desired level on Gold itself instead of Ornaments (jewellery items). This will generate revenue for the government on the one hand, and ornaments/jewellery items fabricators will have the freedom of business on the other hand.
So, CICU urge upon the Union Government withdraw the imposition of Excise Duty Jewellery so that the protests by Swarnkars come to an end, normalcy revives and jewellery business activities re-start and come back on track.