Strike continues: 15 lakh traders join protest against Local Body Tax in Mumbai
Mumbai: As many as 15 lakh traders and wholesalers brought India’s commercial capital Mumbai to halt on Monday with their indefinite strike against the Local Body Tax (LBT) implemented by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). The BMC did away with age-old octroi to impose LBT in Maharashtra on April 1.
Giving a tough time to consumers, neighbourhood retail shops, wholesale trading in clothes, electronics, hardware, metals, cloth, food grain, fruit, vegetables and all types of manufacturing activities in Mumbai were paralysed on Monday morning, said reports.
According to reports, another 5 lakh traders and retailers will join the anti-LBT protest to make it big, said the president of Federation of Associations of Maharashtra (FAM), Viren Shah.
The FRTWA has joined its over one million counterparts in the rest of the state, large sections of which have been on regular strike and agitations since April 22, following a call by the Confederation of All India Traders.
The traders in Maharashtra want both the taxes — octroi and LBt scrapped and said, "We do not want the LBT under any circumstances. We shall surrender our LBT registration soon if the government does not withdraw it.”
Meanwhile, a petition by a Pune trade body challenging the LBT will come up for hearing before the Supreme Court Tuesday, May 7.
LBT, which replaced the age-old octroi in the various municipalities in the state, is an account-based cess collection for every raw material used or imported into the city limits by all businesses, traders and manufacturers.
While it has already been implemented in most parts of Maharashtra from April 1, it is due to be imposed in Mumbai from October 1 this year.
Meanwhile, as many as 50,000 traders in Mumbai down shutters against the implementation of Local Body Tax from October 1. The Federation of Association of Maharashtra (FAM) organised a massive rally on last Friday in which nearly 2 lakh traders from across the state marched to participate in the rally.