Indians living in the Gulf region have criticised the government's decision to impose a 35 per cent duty, besides other charges, on television sets being brought into the country.
NRIs and other airline passengers could earlier carry one piece of flat TV (plasma/LED/LCD) for personal use, worth up to Rs 35,000 as part of their baggage allowance, without incurring any customs duty on the same.
This will no longer be the case from August 26 as India has issued a moratorium on the scheme. "Instead of imposing duty, government should introduce a scheme in which one can pay the duty free value by foreign currency and get household items delivered in India at export price," K V Shamsudheen, Chairman of UAE-based Pravasi Bandhu Welfare Trust, said in an open letter addressed to Minister of Commerce Anand Sharma. An Indian IT professional working in Dubai said someone who carries a TV set to India must have remitted millions of rupees during the year.
"NRIs should be allowed by the government to take such items as a matter of courtesy. After all, most Indians take such items to India only once in a while and they are almost always a gift for family and friends," he said.