18-day stir cost jewellery industry Rs 70,000 crore

The 18-day-long strike by jewellers, which ended on Saturday night, is estimated to have caused losses of Rs 60,000-70,000 crore to the industry.

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Meanwhile, a three-member committee has been set up to look into issues of jewellers and submit a report to the government within two months.

The Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) in a release said that the 18-day stir caused “losses of R60,000-70,000 crore” to the industry.

The decision to call off the strike was taken on Saturday night after the government assured jewellers that there will be no harassment by excise officials and no ‘inspector raj’, said Sreedhar G V, chairman, Gems and Jewellery Federation.

The decision was taken unanimously by major jewellery associations after they met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday over the 1 per cent excise duty proposed on jewellery in the Budget. “It (Excise duty) has not been rolled back, but our grievances have been taken care of. Jaitley has assured us that there will be no ‘inspector raj’ and we are hopeful of getting a notification in this regard soon. After long deliberations, all associations agreed to call off the stir,” Sreedhar said. Jewellers were also opposed to the mandatory quoting of PAN by customers for transactions of R2 lakh and above.

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