Indian Jewellers call off strike

Finally, Indian Govt. Finance Minister Pranabh Mukherjee decided to roll back the proposed norms on excise duty on jewellery and as a result India’s biggest buyer, Jewellers suspended their 21-day longest strike on Friday.

Recent report has come out after a meeting with Finance Minister in which he assured them that he would address their concerns on a tax on non-branded gold ornaments when Parliament takes up the Finance Bill, 2012.

However strike had started to condemn the Mukherjee’s proposed norm over a 1 percent levy for non- branded jewelery and doubled import duties on gold, a day after he presented his budget.

According to source report, after ending the meeting, Bombay Bullion Association president Prithviraj Kothari said that they will resume work from Saturday, while All India Sarafa Association told the strike has now been suspended until May 10.

One reason of Pranabh to roll back proposed duties is that this 21days long strike cost the industry about 200 billion rupees loss and impact on exchange rate by deficit to 4.3% of the GDP.

Now they are waiting for Parliament’s approval for the Finance Bill that may be in this month, also met with UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi. Gandhi has “assured us that she will forward our demands to the finance minister for further action”, reportedly said by All India Swarankar Sangh President Madhukar Chachad.

This highest pressure of strike has lead to Rs.20,000 crore loss. The disapproved jewellers warned to go with another protests if the Finance Bill isn’t approved as per their demands.

Meanwhile, it is for first time that Mukherjee hiked the duties on unbranded jewellery and double the import tax on gold coins and platinum to 4 percent, a second attempt in one this year.

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