Days after a traders’ strike under its aegis, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) on Sunday said that it will launch a national movement against the ‘arbitrariness’ of GST provisions and alleged malpractices of e-commerce giants.

In a statement, the traders’ body said that in the next phase of the campaign against GST provisions and e-commerce majors, states would be the key focus of the protesting traders.

The campaign will begin on March 5 and will continue till April 5.

It said that at present, traders across the country are badly plagued by the provisions of GST and the constant arbitrariness of foreign companies in e-commerce and now the traders are either forced to resolve these issues or shut their business.

According to Secretary General of CAIT, Praveen Khandelwal a video conference was held on Sunday in which more than 275 prominent leaders from all the states and union territories of the country participated and decided unanimously to launch a national wide campaign on these two issues.

“It is not the Centre but the states who are more responsible for diluting the spirit of GST, to their own likings and now they can’t escape from their responsibilities,” it said.

CAIT alleged that the state governments have left no stone unturned to distort the GST because of their own interests which has led to the sufferings of traders.

In this context, CAIT has urged the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman that since is the Chairperson of the GST Council, she should initiate dialogues with the traders’ organisation immediately about the current distorted nature of GST.

Further, it has also urged the Union Commerce Minister, Piyush Goyal to issue further amend and clarify the FDI policy and also finalise and release e-commerce policy since the FDI policy is being grossly violated by foreign e-commerce companies.

“Since elections will be held in five states in the next few months and as a vote bank in all the states, the trading community holds a huge majority in strength and numbers and can be a deciding factor for the victory and defeat of any political party. Hence the decision of CAIT to launch a nationwide campaign amid elections and the anger of traders can affect the prospects of every political party,” said the CAIT statement.

It added that during the nation campaign starting March 5 all trade organisations across the country will celebrate “Agitational Month” through which more than 40,000 traders’ associations of the country will submit memorandum to Governors, Chief Ministers, Finance Ministers, Principal Secretaries for finance, GST Commissioners and District Collectors in respective states.

Besides, the CAIT chapters will also give memorandum to the President of all national parties and state level parties.

On March 13, traders’ associations will picket in more than 600 districts of the country registering, while on March 20, trader rallies will be held in all the districts of the country.

Further, traders will hold ‘dharna’ (sit-in protests) outside the houses of the MPs of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members.

–IANS

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