3 lakh traders to shut shop for two days to protest LBT
More than three lakh traders across the city are observing a two-day bandh starting today, demanding a Government Resolution (GR) on the statement made by Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan in the assembly on the issue of replacing octroi with Local Body Tax (LBT).
The Trader’s Association further threatened to call an indefinite bandh from May 8 if their demand of brining GR is not fulfilled. However, shops of essential commodities like medicines, milk, vegetables and petrol pumps will remain open these two days.
The president of Poona Merchants’ Chambers, Ajit Setiya said that besides the demand of brining GR, the government should merge LBT with Value Added Tax (VAT).
“The bandh will not affect citizens much as it was announced on April 22. Our intention of calling the bandh is to draw the government’s attention towards our unfulfilled demands,” said Setiya.
According to the new tax policy, all traders who import goods worth over Rs 5,000 will have to register themselves with the municipal corporation for the new tax. The process or registration started last Sunday. .
Earlier, District Collector Vikas Deshmukh appealed to the traders to re-think their decisions of calling a bandh by arranging a meeting with the representatives of Trader’s Association.