Jewellery shops across the city remained closed on Saturday as part of nationwide protest against levy of customs, excise duty and consumer tax on gold and unbranded precious gold jewellery in the Union budget.
Around 1.2 lakh jewellery shops, bullion dealers and jewellery making units in the city will remain closed on Sunday and Monday causing a daily loss of business worth Rs750 crore.
The government has doubled the customs duty on gold to 4% from 2% while excise duty has been introduced on unbranded precious jewellery.
The excise duty will be 1% on 30% of transaction value. The government has also levied 1% consumer tax.
Various jeweller bodies will submit a memorandum to the Central government. “We will make a representation to the government next week,” said Prithviraj Kothari, president of Bombay Bullion Association. He said the jewellery and bullion business in the city accounts for 35% of the total turnover in the country.
“Around 1,200 jewellers, bullion dealers and jewellery makers took part in the protest at Zaveri Bazar,” said Kumar Jain, vice president of Mumbai Jewellers' Association.
Vasant Birawat, who is on the board of directors of Gem and Jewellery Federation and is also the chairman of its manufacturing committee, said the consumer tax would add to the burden of the buyers who already find gold to be expensive.
“In India 80% of the people are service class and lots of them buy gold as an investment,” he said, pointing out that it would now become difficult for the consumers to buy gold.