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Odisha Chief Minister urged the Centre to withdraw GST being imposed on kendu leaf trade

Bhubaneswar26/11/22: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday urged the Centre to withdraw GST being imposed on kendu leaf trade in the interest of the livelihoods of about eight lakh poor people.

Patnaik dashed a letter to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, barely three days after announcing a special package for the welfare of kendu leaf pluckers.

“Imposition of GST (18%) on kendu leaves is adversely affecting the trade. As a result, it affects the livelihoods of Kendu leaf pluckers, binders, and seasonal workers and the implementation of social security and welfare schemes for them,” Patnaik said in the letter.

The CM said kendu leaf, a minor forest produce (MFP), is the financial backbone of about eight lakh leaf pluckers, binders, and seasonal workers of Odisha and they mostly belong to the tribal community and poorest of the poor of the society.

No photo description available.

He said tribals collect the leaves as part of their right defined under the Scheduled Tribals and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006.

“They have the rights to procure and sell these products,” Patnaik mentioned in the letter.

Patnaik on November 23, announced a special package for the people engaged in kendu leaf trade. They were included under the state government’s flagship Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY).

The Opposition BJP, however, termed Patnaik’s move as politically motivated and aimed at wooing the tribals of Padampur assembly constituency where by-election will be held on December 5.

The BJP in a statement said that Odisha government has not raised to issue relating to imposition of 18 per cent GST on Kendu leaf in the GST Council Meeting. “Let Patnaik announce waiver of 9 per cent GST on kendu leaf which his government is getting as share from the central tax, said Leader of Opposition Jay Narayan Mishra.

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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