Business Bureau :
The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) on Monday has called for a Bharat Trade Bandh on February 26, saying that GST is one of the most complex taxation systems which has resulted into miseries of the traders. CAIT National President B C Bhartia, Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal and AITWA Chairman Pradeep Singhal jointly announced this decision at the three day National Trade Conference which began on Monday in the city. The All India Transport Welfare Association (AITWA), the premier transport body of the country has supported Bharat Trade Bandh and has declared to hold ‘Chakka Jam’ of transporters on February 26. Bhartia said that the current system of GST has resulted in confusion as the compliances are not providing tangible benefits to the stakeholders.
The trade leaders across the country were of a unanimous view that both Central and State Governments have failed to respond to miseries related to GST of the trading community. The only aim of the GST Council so far is how to get more revenue and how to load the traders with more compliance burden without considering the ground realties of trade. “Trade cannot survive without quick innovations and diversifications in products profile as per changing demands of the markets,” Bhartia said. “GST seriously lacks product innovations owing to the complicated tax structure. There is no consultative mechanism with the traders pertaining to GST law and rules both at Centre and State Government level which is against the policy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for taking stakeholders into confidence while framing a policy with minimum Government-maximum governance”, he added.
Khandelwal said that the trade leaders at the conference considered that GST is a progressive taxation system and must be free from glitches, anomalies, disparities and distortions. CAIT time and again expressed its view that the tax net of GST should be widened resulting into more revenue to the Government but it is possible only when the GST is simplified to the extent that even a small trader operating his business at remote area could also comply with GST without any external help. Repeated statements of CAIT were never responded by the GST Council which has generated a feeling among the traders across the country that GST Council has its own agenda and it is not interested in obtaining cooperation of traders. “We highly regret such dismal picture of GST and which has compelled the trade leaders attending the conference to call for a Bharat Trade Bandh,” Khandelwal said.