Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala took a dig at the central government on Friday over the reported impact of the GST on Surat’s textile industry.
The senior Congress leader took to Twitter to pose a series of questions after quoting from media reports that the GST had severely hit the textile industry bringing down trade by 50 per cent.
“Surat’s textile industry destroyed. GST brings trade down by 50 per cent. 22 lakh jobs at stake,” he wrote while demanding a response from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Surjewala also asked three questions, “1. Why did textile industry come down to 2.5 crore from 4 crore? 2. Why no refund of Rs 500 crore of Input Tax Credit? 3. Why no opening stock credit worth Rs 160 crore to 50 thousand weavers?”
Power loom weavers in Surat, a prominent industrial city in PM Modi’s home state of Gujarat, have reportedly written to the PM requesting him to conduct a detailed survey on the GST, which they claim has rendered over 4 lakh connected to the city’s textile value chain jobless. Among them are 50,000 workers associated with weaving.
The TOI reports that at least 1 lakh power loom machines have been sold in scrap since November 2017. The production of man-made fabric (MMF) has gone down because weavers have been forced to work in the single shift of eight hours.
The weavers complain of discrimination against the weaving industry when it comes to ITC refund, which they do not get. Besides the issue of refund, the rising prices of raw materials and decreasing demand have hit the industry badly.
A non-refund of ITC hampers capital investment in new machines. The traders association are, therefore, asking the government to provide a long-term solution for the sake of the survival of the industry.