Flour mills across Pakistan are going on a two-day strike from today (June 24) as a protest against budget measures proposing a hike in income tax on turnover of flour mills and increase the sales tax on bran, a business leader said Wednesday.
If our demands were not accepted, we will start a nationwide indefinite strike as per the decision of the Pakistan Flour Mills Association, said Tariq Sadiq, noted business leader and Patron of Rawalpindi-Islamabad Flour Mills Association.
Speaking at a hurriedly called meeting, he said that masses get seventy percent of their nutrition requirements from flour which should not be made expensive.
He said bran is consumed by livestock and slapping additional sales tax on it is a wrong step as it will increase its price by Rs10 per kg which will result in a hike in the price of milk beef and mutton.
Speaking to the meeting on zoom, Chairman of Pakistan Flour Mills Association Punjab Asim Raza said that cigarettes have been given more importance on flour in the budget which is unjustified and reflects insensitivity.
All over the world important food items are not taxed to keep their price in the buying power of masses while subsidies worth billions were given amid pandemic to provide relief to consumers but it’s different in Pakistan.
He informed that 285 million tonnes of flour is consumed annually in Pakistan and its price should not be increased but reduced to provide relief to masses reeling under runaway inflation.
The irresponsible and unjust attitude of FBR is not helping but paving way for another crisis in the country therefore the federal government should withdraw 17 percent sales tax on the choker and restores the previous rate of 0.25pc turnover tax, he warned.