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Confusion over GST prevails among handloom weavers in northern India

Published: November 30, 2017

STORY: Handloom weavers in India’s northern Varanasi city said on Wednesday (November 29) that the industry was yet to fully understand the Goods and Service Tax (GST) and were still suffering from the jolt of country’s biggest tax reform.

Handloom industry, which is the pride of the temple town of Varanasi, has been in tatters since the rollout of GST. India unified the ageing tax structure that replaced more than a dozen federal and state in July.

The condition of the handloom industry had already been deteriorating with the advent of technology and now the GST has further increased their misery.

Handloom products were earlier subjected to 18 percent levy but it was reduced to 12 percent after the GST Council meet in September.

GST compliance is an additional burden, to a community that lacks the basic knowledge of procedures.

A garment manufacturer, Mushtaq Ahmed said the government should focus on familiarizing people on how the GST works.

The long-awaited GST has been hailed as India’s biggest tax overhaul since independence in1947. It has unified Asia’s third largest economy and 1.3 billion people into one of the world’s biggest common markets.

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