January 2018 News

Police Detain Kashmir Industrial Unit Holders Protesting Against 'disparity' In CGST Tax Refund

1 January 2018
Greater Kashmir
Saqib Malik

Srinagar: Police on Monday detained scores of industrial unit holders protesting against SRO 519 and SRO 521 recently passed by the state government. The protesting unit holders who had gathered at Press Colony in Srinagar said that the 'discriminatory SROs' were passed in a hurry to benefit 'a handful of outside investors' based in Jammu region. Police swung into action and detained dozens of protesters after they tried to march towards the busy Resideny Road. The protest held under the banner of Federation Chambers of Industries Kashmir (FCIK) saw presence of unit holders from several industrial estates across Kashmir. FCIK President, Mukhtair Yousuf said providing 42 percent CGST refund from the state government to selected outside investors based in Jammu region is a burden on the state exchequer. 'Only 282 units out of a total 60,000 units in the state have been notified for the 42 percent CGST refund from state government while 58 percent refund to them is given by central government,' he said. Yousuf said SRO 519 and 521 show an 'indifferent attitude' of the authorities towards the local industry which survives despite logistical and other constraints. 'We are not averse to refund for any industrial units but somewhere a 'deal has been struck' which made government pass the SROs in such a hurry while ignoring majority of local industry,' he claimed. Industrialist Syed Shakeel Qalander said as a part of SRO 519, mostly the outside investors based in Jammu, Kathua and Samba have been notified for availing CGST refund. Qalander said these outside companies have annual turnover worth thousands of crores which means the CGST refund to them also accounts for a huge amount. 'These two SROs are quite bizarre as they make state government to pay massive refund amount for these outside companies. Why did the government have to pass the SRO in such a hurry while putting this burden on state exchequer,' he asked. 'There seems to be some outside pressure on government which is now going back and forth when asked about giving similar CGST refund for bulk of local industry,' he claimed.