With slump in market and losses suffered by local cracker wholesalers last year, a demand for decrease in lump sum tax that has to be deposited with the excise and taxation department has been raised.
Even as the files for allotment of shops at the cracker market have to be deposited with the police department by September 19, the excise department has so far not fixed any the rate.
The wholesale cracker market, which will be set up near Dana Mandi, houses nearly 70 wholesalers who provide crackers to retailers across the city every year. There are at least 20 cracker stockholders in the city who cater to these wholesalers.
As September 19 is the last date to deposit files with the office of the deputy commissioner of police, the wholesalers are now demanding that the rate of tax which is a lump sum should be fixed at the earliest and this amount should be lesser as compared to last year in the wake of slump in the market.
Last year, the amount of tax from each wholesaler was fixed at Rs 35,000. In 2012, it was Rs 30,000 and Rs 25,000 in 2011.
While there are apprehensions that the excise department could raise the lump sum tax this year, the Ludhiana Fireworks Association has demanded that no such move should be taken this time.
Sanjay Singla, president of the association, said due to fewer sales of crackers last year, a large amount of stock was still lying in godowns. “Any increase in the amount of tax that has to be paid with the excise department will result in loss to the wholesalers. The amount of tax should be decreased,” said Singla.
A group of wholesalers also met assistant excise taxation commissioner (AETC) Rajwinder Kaur and demanded decrease in tax amount this year.
Ashok Thapar, a cracker wholesaler, said it seemed that there would be no boost in business even this year. “We have still not come out of the losses incurred last year. We have requested the excise officials that the amount of tax should be decreased this time,” said Thapar.
Wholesalers have to fill a form along with a draft of Rs 200 and Rs 500 have to be deposited at the suvidha centre of the police department, along with the copies of required documents.
Police would take out the draw for the allotment of temporary structures at cracker market on September 23. Earlier, the district administration used to take out the draw for allotment, but since 2010, the responsibility was given to the police department after the police commissionerate system came into force in Ludhiana.
AETC Rajwinder Kaur said a meeting with the deputy excise taxation commissioner and other officials would be held on Thursday in which the amount of lump sum tax would be fixed.