Ahead of Maharashtra assembly elections, state says no tax rebate if 80% jobs not given to local residents

Ahead of Maharashtra assembly elections, the state government has would soon issue an order whereby GST refunds would be blocked if an industrial unit fails to submit proof that 80 per cent of its employees are local residents, as required by rules.

According Hindustan Times, through a fresh order, the government will stop tax rebates for units found violating the rule, state industries minister Subhash Desai said on Thursday. Industries Minister Subhash Desai said a new Government Resolution (GR) would be brought in for this purpose. It would also apply to recruitment of contract employees, he said. If needed, Maharashtra may contemplate bringing a law, on the lines of Andhra Pradesh, to ensure that local people get certain proportion of jobs in industries, he said. Maharashtra was the first state to frame a rule in 1968 that all industrial establishments should hire at least 80 per cent local people, Desai, a Shiv Sena leader, said.

As per the statistics provided by the industries department, the state has more than 10.26 lakh units, including micro, small, medium and major industries, where more than 69.69 lakh people are employed. Maharashtra government has offered tax sops to various industries on the condition that 80% jobs will be given to locals.

"The first GR was issued on November 18, 1968, and since then the GR has been revised (re-issued) five times till 2008," Desai told reporters. The government gives refund on Goods and Services Tax to industrial establishments based on their capital investment. In 2018-19, the total refund amounted to Rs 3,035 crore, Desai said. As per government records, overall 90 per cent of employees in industrial sector are locals, while 84 per cent of those occupying supervisor/managerial grade posts are Maharashtrians.

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