In a joint representation to Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, the Federation of Karnataka Chamber of Commerce and Industry called for an exemption from fixed charges on electricity for industries.
Karnataka trade and industry on Thursday asked the state government for special aid of Rs 20,000 crore to recover from the pandemic, after suffering heavy losses due to the lockdown and prolonged restrictions induced by COVID. “Trade and industry across the state have suffered a loss of Rs 75,000 crore due to a prolonged lockdown and restrictions, imposed since April to contain the second wave of the pandemic,” the president said of the Federation of Karnataka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI), Perikal Sundar, in a statement. in Bangalore.
Even as trade and industry struggled to recover from the fallout from the first wave of COVID-19 last year, he said the devastation caused by the second wave since March had resulted in huge losses due to the suspension of economic activity throughout the state. âAll of our activities have come to a halt in the past 2 months, although restrictions have been relaxed in 19 districts across the state since June 14,â Sundar said.
In a joint representation to Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, the supreme trade and industry body called for exemption from fixed charges on electricity for industries. “We asked for a 50 percent refund on property tax and license fees for 2 years, an interest subsidy on bank loans for 6 months, and reimbursement of wages and salaries for 3 months,” Sundar said. . The umbrella body said state and central governments collected Rs 84,000 crore from commerce and industry as the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Rs 120,000 crore as as income tax, Rs 22,851 crore in excise duty on alcohol sales and Rs 16,000 crore in gasoline and diesel sales since the pandemic struck last March.
âAs the pandemic and lockdowns in both waves disrupted our operations and resulted in increasing losses of businesses and jobs, the state would have to suspend and defer license and permit renewals for a year so that we can recover and maintain our livelihoods, âsaid Sundar. As the second wave dwindled and positive cases dwindled day by day, he urged the state government to lift lockdowns in the remaining 11 districts and further ease restrictions in 19 districts to allow trade and commerce. industry to resume operations for a gradual recovery.
âOn our side, we assure the government to follow all protocols, including standard operating procedures and behaviors appropriate to Covid, such as wearing face masks, maintaining social distancing and hygiene to contain the spread of the virus and prevent the potential threat of a third wave, âhe reiterated. The umbrella body has also urged the state government to allow buses and the metro to resume operations, as the majority of people depend on public transport to get around towns and villages across the state. âThe state government should also vaccinate all of our employees, workers and workers on a priority basis to ensure their health safety and work without fear of infection,â Sundar added.