Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Federation ( KTMF) has called for a "Kashmir bandh" on Saturday (July 1) while Kashmir Economic Alliance (KEA) has said it will launch a hunger strike on the same day against proposed implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the state.
Chairman of his faction of KTMF, Bashir Ahmad Rather said all "stake holders" should observe a strike on Saturday to protest implementation of GST "which is a direct attack on state's special status."
"The state and central government's are making all efforts to erode Article 370 from our state . State government is just trying to appease the center because it is 'working on an RSS agenda' which it wants to fully implement in JK," he said in a statement. "The state Finance Minister had recently said that a detailed draft of GST will be presented infront of common people and traders but that never happened which is quite deceitful."
The KTMF has called for a strike on July 1, the day government is planning to implement GST across India.
The all-party meeting convened by the government on Thursday to discuss implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) law in Jammu and Kashmir failed to evolve a consensus.
Urging Kashmiris to make the shutdown call successful, Rather said: "There have been assurances from the state Finance Minister that GST implementation would result in economic development and help mop Rs 1500 crore tax. These are all ways to sabotage our efforts to oppose GST and brainwash common people. Those in power are only trying to safeguard their chair and retain power."
Slamming the state government, Rather said, "JK has its own state financial act which is unique to us and a milestone for various financial purposes. We demand a separate GST act for JK which will be passed by legislative assembly so that financial powers remain with the state and Act 5 of the states constitution remains intact."
He said: "We demand that integrated Goods and Services Tax to remain with us so that locally made indigenous products such as handicrafts etc become tax free,".
Meanwhile, Shaher-e-Khaas Traders Federation has also called for a strike on July 1 incase the government decides to go ahead with implementation of GST.
President of the Federation, Nazir Ahmad Shah said GST is " anti-people" tax regime which will "rob JK of its special status".
Acting chairman of KEA, Farooq Ahmad Dar told Greater Kashmir that anti-GST rallies would be held to create awareness among people of how this taxation regime "will erode special financial status of the state".
"Our faction will hold hunger strike from July 1. The Finance Minister of the state trying to assure people that GST implementation won't harm the financial powers of the state is unacceptable. They are trying to keep us in dark," Dar said.