RAIPUR: Opposition members raised concern over fall in production and hike in cement price during monsoon session of Chhattisgarh Assembly.
BJP member Shivratan Sharma, during question hour sought reply on number of cement factories in the state, their production capacity and quantity of clinker they sent to other states.
In his reply forest and environment minister Mohammed Akbar said in six districts of the state a total of 13 cement factories are operational. Raising supplementary question, Sharma sought to know whether the state is incurring any revenue loss for sending clinker outside the state. Akbar said that during the VAT regime the tax was levied on clinker but now with GST in place no such taxation exists. The state government cannot impose any taxation on the clinker sent outside the state, he said, adding tax benefit is derived by the state wherever it is sold.
Former CM and JCC (J) member Ajit Jogi said Chhattisgarh produces 25% of cement in the country by using local mines, limestone, power, water and land but in return the state gets pollution. Therefore, the state government should take initiative to pressurise the cement companies to sell their products in lower rate in Chhattisgarh as compared to other states.
JCC (J) member Pramod Kumar Sharma claimed that the state is incurring a loss of around Rs 2000 crore annually by sending clinker to other states.
BJP member Saurabh Singh stated that if the cement price is reduced then it will boost consumption within the state and help the state earn additional revenue through the GST.