City witnessed sale of gold worth Rs. 7 crore on Dhanteras - a day considered auspicious for buying gold. The metal was purchased almost half in comparison to last year.
Going by the data tabulated by UT excise and taxation department, gold worth Rs. 7 crore was sold till Friday evening across the city. Last year, as per jewellers' association, gold worth Rs. 12 to Rs. 14 crore was sold. Even though the metal's rate this year was Rs. 29,900 per 10 gm (22 karat), Rs. 1,000 less than Rs. 30,800 last year, the sale witnessed a dip.
Assistant commissioner, excise and taxation department, RC Bhalla said gold worth Rs. 7 crore was sold in the city till 6 pm.
City jewellers blame inflation for the dip in sale, besides the fluctuating rate of gold.
President, Jewellers' Association, Sector 19, Vinod Talwar said, "This year the sale of gold on Dhanteras has witness a dip by 40%. Last year, gold worth Rs. 12 to Rs. 14 crore was sold on this day."
He attributed the trend to inflation and weak purchasing power of residents.
Another jeweller Vikas Jain of Sector 23 said the fluctuation in the rate of gold was also responsible for the dip in its sale. Customers otherwise also bought gold in April this year when the rates had come down drastically to about Rs. 25,500.
Meanwhile, the UT excise and taxation department for the first time on Dhanteras conducted checks at various jewellery shops in the city.
The excise officials visited prominent jewellery shops at least four times in the day to check the sales. In all five shops were visited in Sector 22, five in Manimajra and two shops in Sector 17.
A senior officer in the UT administration said checks were carried out in the wake of dip in sale of jewellery these days which was leading to jewellers not handing over bills to customers to evade value-added tax (VAT). However, time the sale was not much in comparison to last few years, he added.
Bhalla said, "Shops were visited to monitor the sales, especially on Dhanteras. VAT is levied at the rate of 1% on the total cost of the jewellery sold."
Special challan books printed
The excise department had also got special challan books printed for just one day to issue slips to jeweller not giving proper bills and evading VAT.