KOCHI: The jewellery shops in the city remained closed on Wednesday following a strike called by the All-Kerala State Gold and Silver Merchants Association demanding review of the hike in sales tax.
Around 68 shops in the city under the association remained closed. However, the stores under the All- Kerala Gold Jewelleries Federation were open.
The jewellers urged the state government to reduce the sales tax by 3 per cent. It is currently 5 per cent. The government had revised the tax rate by one per cent recently. The jewellers in cities like Coimbatore are taking advantage as business is being diverted to those places, said a jewellery store owner on Broadway.
It is the small shop owner who bears the brunt of the tax burden. Apart from sales tax, the compounding fee is also high, he said.
Agitating jewellery shop owners under the aegis of the association also staged a dharna in front of the Secretariat in Thiruvananthapuram.