Jewellers create ruckus outside venue of Pranab`s function

Jewellers create ruckus outside venue of Pranab's function

Last Updated: Sun, Apr 01, 2012 04:25 hrs
India's Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee speaks during a news conference in New Delhi

Several slogan-shouting jewellers, demanding withdrawal of excise duty on jewellery items, on Saturday created a ruckus outside the Chandigarh venue where Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee was to address a seminar.

As Mukherjee entered the venue, the jewellers, raising slogans against him.

Police intervened in the matter and heated arguments were exchanged between the cops and the protesters.

Police forced the jewellers to vacate the area around the building where the Union Minister was to address the seminar.

The jewellers wanted to submit a memorandum to Mukherjee seeking withdrawal of excise duty on jewellery items.

The protesters argued with police to allow four of them to hand over the memorandum to the Union Minister.

Police scaled up security around the building.

Jewellers in Punjab and Haryana are observing a shutdown for about a fortnight protesting Mukherjee's budget proposals on March 16 announcing one per cent levy on unbranded jewellery and doubling of import duty to 4 per cent on gold.

Both Punjab and Haryana Chief Ministers, in separate missives to the Union Finance Minister, had sought roll back in the proposed increase in import duty on gold and imposition of excise duty on unbranded jewellery.

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