Bhubaneswar, Nov 30 (LocalWire) Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik has written to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to reduce Goods and Services Tax (GST) on Kendu (Tendu) leaves.
Kendu leaf, a Minor Forest Produce (MFP) is a financial lifeline of Odisha tribals.
“:The tribal people collect the leaves as part of their right defined…they have the right to procure and sell these products,” said Patnaik in his letter to Jaitley.
“In the interest of large cross section of people dependent upon Kendu (Tendu) leaves for their livelihood, it is requested to …consider to reduce GST on Kendu (Tendu) leaves from 18% to 5%,” the Odisha CM said.
Pertinently, the existing high GST on the Kendu leaves has led to drop in sale price and thousands of quintals of leaves are drying at different godowns, adversely impacting 8.5 lakh Kendu leaf pluckers.