More than 100 trade and industry associations on Wednesday protested against the state's ruling alliance to ask for value-added tax (VAT) refund and advance-tax rollback.
Carrying placards written "Vyapar nahin to sarkar nahin (no trade, no government)", "VAT refund: Sadda paisa vapas karo (pay back our money)", the protesters gathered at Company Bagh Chowk here and marched in a procession to BMC Chowk, where they demonstrated outside the excise and sales tax office.
"The VAT refund issue is long pending but except for assurance from the deputy chief minister, we have received nothing," Federation of Jalandhar Industrial and Traders' Associations president Gursharan Singh said while addressing the protesters.
The deputy CM had agreed to solve the matter before September 15, still Rs. 30 crore of VAT refund of Jalandhar industrialists was due, he added.
Condemning the state government for imposing advance tax, he said it was a new name for entry tax that had been abolished by court's order. "Industry, in acute financial crisis already, can take no further burden," he said, adding: "Even the excise and taxation department harasses traders and blocks taxpayer identification number (TIN) without valid reason."
Out of form
On the pretext of the requirement of filing C-form (detail of inter-state sales transaction), VAT refund was being denied, said Ravinder Dhir, a member of the joint action committee of industrialists and traders. "These form are unavailable throughout India, including Punjab, so traders are unable to get sales tax and now VAT cases assessed," he added. "if the genuine demands of the business community is not accepted, the ruling alliance will have to face the consequences in the coming parliamentary election," Dhir added.
Rs 30 crore VAT refund due to Jalandhar industrialists alone