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GST on textiles: Gujarat cloth traders continue to protest 5% tax rate

Some small traders said the new tax regime would adversely affect their businesses

Press Trust of India  |  Ahmedabad 

GST, protests
Traders at a day-long strike against the goods and services tax in Ahmedabad on Thursday. (Photo: Reuters)

Cloth shop owners in various parts of on Tuesday decided to continue their indefinite strike against five per cent levied on textiles, a day after police baton-charged protesting members of their association in

The Maskati market in Ahmedabad, a major textile centre in the state, wore a deserted look as around 25,000-30,000 observed a shutdown, protesting "police high- handedness" with agitating in

They said the shops will remain shut indefinitely till the time their demands on were not met by the

"In Ahmedabad, around 25,000-30,000 cloth shop owners have gone on an indefinite strike. Police action on protesters in is unacceptable. Instead of meeting our demands, the is applying force to suppress us," said Ritesh Shah, a textile shop owner in Maskati market.

Surat's textile markets too remained closed, with street deserted.

"This city gained prominence due to the hard work of businessmen like us. Those indulging in have not done much for the city. The police action is unacceptable and was entirely unprovoked. We stand united against the police action and will keep our shops shut indefinitely," said Ganpat Jain, a member of Sangharsh Samiti, which called the shutdown.

Thousands of protesting members had gathered yesterday near the Ring Road in Surat, where the main market is situated, demanding scrapping of GST on

Police then wielded batons to disperse the agitators who allegedly engaged in stone-pelting.

Protesting had yesterday alleged that the police action came at the behest of Surat's BJP MP C R Patil while some shop owners sided with the leader and decided to keep their establishments open, defying the protesting association's call for an indefinite bandh. Patil was not immediately available for comment.

Top leadership in the state too had condemned police action against traders.

The had called for an indefinite bandh on Sunday in the Surat textile market, which is one of the largest in the country.

Several cloth markets in the state have since remained closed as most traders have not registered for the new tax system and do not have the GST number. They are hoping that the central will intervene to resolve the situation.

Some small traders said the new tax regime would adversely affect their businesses. They contended that the time given to them for GST compliance was short.

The traders have demanded that the GST should be imposed on apparel and not fabric.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, July 04 2017. 19:39 IST