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Bullion markets protest gold duty hike, closed for third day

PTI     March 19, 2012
Bullion markets across the country, including Delhi and Mumbai, remained closed for the third straight day on Monday as traders continued protests against the budgetary proposals to raise duty on gold imports and levying excise duty on unbranded jewellery.

Bullion markets in the national capital and most of showrooms remained closed in several parts of the country, All India Sarafa Association President Sheel Chand Jain said.

"The budgetary proposals of a hike in import duty on gold and levying of 1 per cent excise duty on non-branded jewellery would affect business and wipe-off the existence of nearly 95 per cent of small jewellers in the country," he said.

Jain said the proposal of a hike in import duty on gold will encourage smuggling of the precious metal.

He has urged Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in a letter to withdraw the proposal of levying one per cent excise duty on non-branded gold jewellery to save the traders.

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