Most commercial markets were shut on Friday all over the country in the view of the Bharat bandh call given by the Confederation of All-India Traders (CAIT) against the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the unprecedented continuous hike in fuel prices, and the E-way Bill.
In a statement issued by CAIT last week, it said over 8 crore traders from more than 40,000 trade associations across the country will participate in the Bharat Vyapar Bandh to protest the “draconian, arbitrary and critical” amendments made recently to the GST rules.
CAIT secretary-general Praveen Khandelwal said the All India Transporters Welfare Association is in support of Bharat Bandh call and will hold a chakka jam (roadblock) on Friday. According to reports, many traders are expected to stage dharnas at many places.
Khandelwal said almost 950 amendments have been made so far to GST rules in the past four years and issues related to glitches in the GST portal and the continuous increase in compliance burden are the major lacunae in the tax regime.
Many farm organisations, who are protesting against the farm laws, have extended their support to the Bharat Bandh call by transport and trade unions.
The Sanyukta Kisan Morcha urged all the protesting farmers to join the Bharat bandh peacefully. Farm leader Dr Darshan Pal said all farm organisations are in support with the traders who are facing hardships due to GST and rising fuel prices.
The All India Transporters Welfare Association (AITWA) is in support of Bharat bandh call, the association has urged the Central government to abolish the e-way bill, which regulates the movement of goods.
As per the e-way laws, truckers must carry the bill to transport goods from one place to another after online sale of the goods is shown on the GST portal. They have also demanded reduction in fuel prices, saying it was making the transport business unviable.
AITWA also wants the government to scrap the penalty on transporters for any time-based compliance target of transit and make diesel prices uniform across the country.