#National Affairs
Taget:
Prime Minister of India
Region:
India

Dear Associations, Federation, Factory owners and friends,

As you all know that Marble and granite have been put under the GST slab of 28% which has put a question mark on the survival of marble and granite industry in India.
Currently the tax on the said items vary from 5% to 14.5% and 85% of the marble and granite factories fall under SSI (small scale industry) units hence, are exempted from excise duty. Whereas, the upcoming GST of 28% will be bringing in liability of excise duty and other taxes which currently the SSI units don't have to pay. This will be a great burden on the marble and granite units.

Today consumers are not ready to pay even 5% of tax and sometime the factory owners have to bare the tax in order to meet the target sales. Now imagine having to pay 28% would only result into two things, either factory owner would loose the sales or to make a sale happen he will pay the tax from his pocket. Both the condition will sooner or later force the units to shut, furthermore increasing the problems of industry extinction and labour unemployment.

Already Indian marble and granite face tight competition from imported marble and now the high GST tax rate is only going to make the situation worse.
Currently 80% of Indian marble is sold on an average rate of ₹ 50 and about 90% of Indian granite is sold on an average rate of ₹65-₹70. Seeing the current sales price scenario, having the burden of 28% GST will kill the industry.

Now if we see the economy of Rajasthan, 30.5 % of its GDP come from industries of which mining of marble, granite and other stone is a major part. Marble extracted only in Rajasthan is 90% of all the marble extracted in the entire country. The current tax on marble in Rajasthan is ₹1.10 per sq ft on marble slabs and .₹75 paisa per sq ft on marble tiles. Seeing this kind of history, a straight escalation of tax to 28% is a total injustice.
When we talk about granite sales tax in Rajasthan, it is ₹3.50 per sq ft which again is nothing against the proposed GST.

It may sound like that marble and granite are luxury products, but gone are the days when marble was used by only rich people. Also, with time the deposits are diminishing, resulting in sub standard quality production of stone, which ultimately has reduced the sales price to marble and granite.
And not just this, due to advancement in time the stone industry is already facing many more uncountable problems like costly labour, electricity, high extracting cost, high skilled labour/operator cost etc.

It is also very important to notice that the GST on marble blocks has been increased to 12% where in many states it is 5% currently. Having to first buy marble blocks at higher taxes than before and then selling it on higher taxes than before, which practically no customer would be ready to pay, is only going to make situation worse.
At once the government opens the import policy for imported marble blocks making it easier to get imported marble in India resulting in chunk of Indian currency flowing out from the country, giving tight competition to Indian marble product and on the other side it levies manifold times taxes on Indian material (GST is same for imported and Indian marble both, but imported marble can survive it, for it being a luxury product). How we wish the government would have taken Indian marble under 'Make in India' program.

As of today, all the marble & granite factory owners are surviving on the grey area between high raw material procurement cost/high processing cost and ever decreasing sales price and customer dis-satisfaction. Now when nothing worse could be expected the government decides to impose highest possible tax rate on this industry.

We the marble associations, federation and factory owners request you all to sign the petition to make our voice reach to the H'ble Prime Minister of India and reduce the GST from 28% to 5%.
We hope that the H'ble himself will look into our problem closely and solve the question of our survival.

The Reduce Marble & Granite GST rate from 28% to 5% petition to Prime Minister of India was written by S K Marble Pvt Ltd and is in the category National Affairs at GoPetition.