Traders seethe at tax hike

www.telegraphindia.com

Kalimpong, March 27: The business community here has expressed dissatisfaction over the hike in trade licence fee (Certificate of Enlistment Municipality Fee).

“We have received a notice from Kalimpong Municipality about a hike in the trade license fee applicable from next month. Along with the house tax and food licence tax, this will be another burden adding to our woes,” said Dashrath Prasad, the joint secretary of Kalimpong Vyapar Mandal.

Echoing his words, 32-year- old Ajay Agrawal, who has a shop on D.S. Gurung Road, said: “Till 1999, I had to pay Rs 10. It was then increased to Rs 300. Now I have a notice telling me that I have to pay Rs 800 as my trade licence tax. This is absolutely unfair.”

However, the municipality chairman, C.K. Kumai, said the civic body was entitled to levy taxes up to Rs 1,500 and this was a state-wide phenomenon. He added that a meeting with the businessmen would be convened to discuss their grievances.

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