Petrol pump owners in Punjab has started an indefinite hunger strike today to press for reduction in taxes on petrol and diesel and also said that smuggling of petroleum products was causing massive loss to them. Association has commenced the strike after a short prayer( Ardaas) to God and announced to hold a strike by three employees everyday.Addressing a press conference yesterday, Petrol Pump Dealers Association of Punjab President Paramjit Singh Doaba said, “If the Punjab government does not heed to their demands, they will intensify their protest by shutting down petrol pumps across the state. We have submitted numerous representations to the government, but it has turned a deaf ear to our pleas, leaving us with no choice but to resort to an agitation.The association claimed that the high VAT rates on petrol and diesel as compared to neighbouring states had led to revenue loss of Rs 40,000 crore in last 17 years.
The disparity in VAT in comparison to neighbouring Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh has led to lower sales, also causing revenue losses to the tune of Rs 2,000 crore per annum to the Punjab government, PPDAP Spokesperson G S Chawla said. The states revenue, due to lower sales of petrol and diesel, declined by Rs 190 crore in the first half of 2017-18 in comparison to the corresponding period last year, he said.At present, tax rates on petrol and diesel in Punjab are 37.54 per cent and 17.78 per cent, respectively.
However, tax rate on petrol in Haryana, HP, Delhi, Chandigarh stand at 26.25, 27, 27, 24.77 respectively. While VAT on diesel Haryana, HP, Delhi, Chandigarh stand at 17.22, 16, 17.39 and 16.43 per cent, respectively, they said. with PTI inputs
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