Press Esc to close
Wednesday 23 August 2017
News updated at 11:01 PM IST

Duty on tobacco products up 10-15%

Kalyan Ray New Delhi, Mar 01, 2016, DHNS 1:15 IST
The government provided a list on the enhancement of additional excise duties on cigarettes of various lengths, cigars, cheroots, cigarillos, gutkha, chewing tobacco, khaini, zarda, unmanufactured tobacco and paper rolled bidis dh file photo
The government has announced a 10-15% hike on the excise duty on several tobacco products, but kept bidi out of the tax net, much to the chagrin of health activists who blame bidi for almost six lakh deaths each year.

“To discourage consumption of tobacco and tobacco products, I propose to increase the excise duties on various tobacco products other than bidi by about 10-15%,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in his Budget speech on Monday.

The government provided a list on the enhancement of additional excise duties on cigarettes of various lengths, cigars, cheroots, cigarillos, gutkha, chewing tobacco, khaini, zarda, unmanufactured tobacco and paper rolled bidis. Health activists said bidis are India’s most common tobacco product accounting for almost 64% of tobacco consumption, largely by the poor even though new studies show a shift in the smoking trends both in rural and urban areas.

“It is sad that government continues to subsidise bidi that is responsible for nearly six lakh deaths every year,” said Pankaj Chaturvedi from Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai.

Bidis do not get adequate attention from a fiscal collection point of view and are kept out of the tax net with policy makers claiming that increasing taxes on bidis will affect the livelihood of millions who depend on the trade.

“The continuing discriminatory treatment of cigarettes is a matter of deep concern particularly due to the fact that bidis, which are the most popularly consumed smoking tobacco product in India, especially in rural areas, have once again been spared with no increase in tax after 2012-13,” says a statement from the Tobacco Institute of India.

The additional excise duty on cigarettes is being increased on non-filter and filter cigarettes of various lengths so that the aggregate of duties of excise on such cigarettes increases by about 10-15%. “But since there is no increase on the basic excise duty, it would not make much difference in tobacco prices,” said Monika Arora from the Public Health Foundation of India.

Others also feel that the tax hike on cigarettes was not high enough. “While pegging the GDP growth at 7-7.75% in its Economic Survey, effecting a mere tax increase of 10% on cigarettes is tantamount to making tobacco products more affordable,” pointed out Rijo John, economist at the Indian Institute of Technology, Jodhpur.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
An artist giving final touches to an idol of Lord Ganesha idols in Chikmagalur in Karnataka...

An artist giving final touches to an idol of Lord Ganesha idols in Chikmagalur in Karnataka...

A worker arranges the clay idols of Lord Ganesh at a road side stall ahead of Ganesh Chaturthi...

A worker arranges the clay idols of Lord Ganesh at a road side stall ahead of Ganesh Chaturthi...

Paramilitary personnel at a mock drill during a flag march in Bathinda...

Paramilitary personnel at a mock drill during a flag march in Bathinda...

Women show their ink-marked fingers after casting votes for Bawana assembly seat by-election...

Women show their ink-marked fingers after casting votes for Bawana assembly seat by-election...

A woman walks through a flooded village in Motihari, Bihar State, India...

A woman walks through a flooded village in Motihari, Bihar State, India...

People are rescued from a flooded village in Motihari, Bihar State...

People are rescued from a flooded village in Motihari, Bihar State...

Derailed coaches of Delhi-bound Kaifiyat Express train after it collided with a dumper near...

Derailed coaches of Delhi-bound Kaifiyat Express train after it collided with a dumper near...

Two Interceptor boats that would enhance coastal security and monitoring for the Coast Guard...

Two Interceptor boats that would enhance coastal security and monitoring for the Coast Guard...

Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik creates a sand sculpture with the message 'Triple Talaq...

Sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik creates a sand sculpture with the message 'Triple Talaq...

A boy running on a wooden bridge through a floating garden of lotus flowers on...

A boy running on a wooden bridge through a floating garden of lotus flowers on...

Like us on Facebook

Copyright 2017, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523
Powered by Yodasoft Technologies Pvt. Ltd.