The Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal (PPBM) has urged state deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal to revoke the notice on account of the damage that it is likely to cause to an already stagnant industry.
Traders in the city also organised a peaceful demonstration against e-trip on Friday. The demonstration saw the participation of 35 trade and industrial associations.
In a memorandum to the deputy CM, PPBM president Amrit Lal Jain said that the notification mandated that those dealing in cotton, yarn, mustard, plywood, Iron and steel (excluding scrap) and vegetable-oil (edible and non-edible) making transaction within the state of Punjab under VAT rule 64-A shall compulsorily upload the information on the website of the department before these goods leave the premises of a dealer.
"This public notice will applicable from July 17. A dealer will have to maintain computer, internet, printer with a technical person and his estimated expenditure is likely to be around Rs 40,000 for computer and printer, a one-time payment, Rs 600 per month for internet and Rs 6,000 per month for hiring a technical person," he said. He added that the expenditure for one year will be Rs 79,200.
"Will the department meet this additional burden on VAT dealers? What if the server of the excise and taxation department goes down or there is a power cut or the technical person is on leave or the computer or internet connection is not working or any other technical fault? Should the sales of goods be suspended in such a case?" Jain added.
Jani added that under the VAT rules 64-B inter-state movement of goods of items as iron and steel, hosiery and readymade garments, all types of pipes including plastic pipes, rice, nut bolts/fasteners bill amount exceeding 50,000 will have to follow the above procedure.
"When ICC barriers are established all around the state and Form-36 is filled with complete information and even quarterly returns are submitted by the VAT-registered dealers to the excise and taxation department then what is the necessity of this futile exercise. It seems the department considers the trading community a bonded labourer," he alleged.
He claimed that in 2012-13, traders and industrialists registered 20 per cent growth."Even during the current financial year in the first quarter, VAT dealers grew 11.9% irrespective of a deep recession prevailing in the market."
PPBM office bearers also claimed that e-trip was not a practical system to implement as more than 90% small traders and SMEs industrialist did not have a computer, printer, internet facility and other paraphernalia.
"Traders are under stress on how to implement this uncalled for action of the department," claimed Jain.