Peshawar - The business community and trade unions of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Thursday slammed collection of ‘fixed tax’ through electricity bills and asked the federal government to refrain of traumatising the inflation-hit community and withdraw its anti-masses decision forthwith.

Chairing a meeting of local traders, here at chamber house, Hasnain Khurshid, president Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), said that government collecting Rs3000 to Rs20000 sales tax per month in the electricity bills, which is unjustifiable and couldn’t be accepted at any cast. He said that without differentiating between small and large-scale businesses and godowns, the forced system of fixed sale tax on commercial power meters was reflection of the government’s anti-business policies, and tantamount to economic-murder of traders and business community.

The meeting was attended besides others by the chamber vice president Imran Khan, Javed Akhtar, Anjuman-e-Tajaran Peshawar president Haji Afzal, trade leaders, offices-bearers of various bazaars and markets’ associations. They termed the government decision as economic murder of trader community, and said that it will also badly affect the inflation hit poor masses.

The traders are already paying several taxes including sales tax, but now collection of an additional tax with a new name of ‘fixed tax’ that ranges from Rs3000 to Rs20000 in electricity bills is completely unjustifiable and unfair, the speakers said.

The SCCI’s chief said the frequent increase in power tariffs and collection of Fuel Price Adjustment (FPA) surcharge in power bills is strongly condemnable and unacceptable to them.

He asked the government to take back its decision to collect additional taxes on power bills in the name of FPA and others. He warned to besiege the building of PESCO in WAPDA House if it was even tried to disconnect the power supply of their shops and business premises.

The SCCI president vowed to strongly resist the government anti-masses decision of a fixed ‘sales tax’ on power bills by launching a vigorous agitation campaign across the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.