Indefinite boycott of timber auctions till issues resolved: ATI

Association of Timber Industries during meeting in Jammu on Friday.
Association of Timber Industries during meeting in Jammu on Friday.

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Apr 29 : Association of Timber Industries (ATI) has unanimously decided that no timber trader will attend any general timber auction till their genuine demands are addressed by the concerned authorities.
Speaking in the meeting of the Association held here today, president of the Association Joginder Singh said that earlier auction bid rates were inclusive of all taxes and now the JKFDCl (JK Forest Development Corp Ltd ) has claimed that an extra 2.5 per cent T.C.S will be charged on the bid rates.
He further said that the whole department was befooling timber traders as they said that they are giving 5 per cent discounts but actually when calculated it was 4.17 per cent and now what the department said that they will be giving only 4 percent discounts. He claimed that traders are already paying TCS and they will not pay additional 2.5 PC TCS.
Vice president Puneet Jamwal said that as the timber is local product of state and even then traders are being forced to buy timber from outside states like Himachal and Uttarakhand whose quality and quantity and rates are much better.
Kuldeep Singh Chairman said that the profits of timber traders are already very thin and now department is forcing draconian rules to squeeze their profits and at now cost they will allow these rules to be included in auctions. He said its going to be a long battle and every traders has to be ready as its matter of their lively hood and under no circumstances they will attend auction till taxes are included in bid rates and a actual discount of net 5 percent is given to traders.
They further demanded that labourers at the Depots who are being paid Rs 2.5 per nug by the Corporation for the last over 15 years, be paid at least Rs 8-10 per nug as it is great injustice with them when prices of all the commodities have gone sky high. But this poor class has remained neglected.
Vice president Bharat Bhusan Gupta urged LG, Manoj Sinha to intervene in the matter and resolve the issue of timber trading community and save it from being ruined.
Prominent among others present in the meeting were Shamsher Singh, Sumit Gupta, Rajesh Gupta, Raj Singh and others.