Punjab secondary steel makers criticise tax raids
Chandigarh: Alleging "harassment" by tax authorities, secondary steel makers in Punjab said the methodology adopted by the Excise and Taxation Department in detecting tax evasion is flawed.
"Conducting raids are not the right way (to collect taxes) as such steps of (state) government cause unnecessary harassment to a manufacturing unit.
"If the department suspects that there is a tax evasion then officials can always call up the unit owner and check its records to find out tax evasion," Mandi Gobindgarh Induction Furnace Association President Mohinder Gupta said on Saturday.
Punjab Excise and Taxation department in the past one week carried out raids in several re-rolling mills in iron and steel making hubs -- Mandi Gobindgarh and Khanna -- and claimed to have detected huge tax evasion by steel units.
Over 300 Punjab-based steel makers pay VAT to the tune of Rs 600 crore to state exchequer per annum, industry representatives claimed.
The steel industry described the methodology adopted to detect tax evasion as flawed, saying that there was no such technical data available that could be applied on all the units at one go.
"There are different types of units, consuming various different kinds of raw materials and producing wide range of finished items...Some mills are manual while some are automatic.
Therefore, all the units will have different level of power consumption. Then how can the department find suppression of sales through electricity usage," said All India Steel Re-rollers Association President Vinod Vashisht.