Bullion business worth crores remains hampered in the state as jewellers’ strike demanding a rollback of 1 per cent excise duty on ornaments (non-silver) has entered its second month. The indefinite strike by jewellers commenced on March 1.
Buyers are hoping that the strike will be called off and it will be business as usual in the wedding season in the second half of the month. A few, however, have turned to online jewellery stores delivering in the city till the time the local brick and mortar shops remain closed.
However, with the onset of the festive season, the gems and jewellery industry fears losing out on sizeable sales, with some industry leaders saying continuation of the strike will be a disaster for the business.
Meanwhile, the government has constituted a panel under former Chief Economic Advisor Ashok Lahiri to look into the set of demand of jewellers.
The sub-committee, which has been asked to submit its report in 60 days, will look into issues related to the compliance procedure for the excise duty, including records to be maintained, forms to be filled, operating procedures and other relevant aspects.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had proposed 1 per cent excise duty on jewellery without input credit or 12.5 per cent with input tax credit on jewellery excluding silver other than studded with diamonds and some other precious stones.