Victory

Give Hulled Millets exemption from GST - Support dryland farmers!

This petition made change with 517 supporters!


Millets are a traditional staple in most of India.

In the last fifty years or so, however, they have been largely replaced by rice and wheat in our diet. Consuming more millets instead of rice has been proven to promote well-being and help prevent & fight diabetes. As awareness of the health benefits is spreading, more people are taking to millets and a small millet movement has started to gain momentum all over India.

Adding a tax to millets will not just effect the consumers & the public health but also marginal farmers.

Millets are farmer friendly, rain-fed crops. Studies have shown that growing millets instead of cash crops has been shown to reduce farmer suicides drastically. This is because they don't need much water or addition of fertilisers and pesticides to grow well. This being the case, the farmer is not required to take loans to start cultivation. Being hardy crops, Millets provide the farmer with much needed food security, especially with unpredictable rainfall and falling groundwater table.

Millets are the last standing crops in case of a draught!

Despite both rice and millet rice being staples, it is not fair that millets are being taxed whereas rice is exempt (refer to Chapter 11 : 5% : 1104). Millets are not a luxury or fancy food (like oats) Additionally, they a not a recent addition to our diet - millets have been eaten in our country for thousands of years, they have even found a mention in the Ramayana & have their own names in most indian languages. Millets are everyday food and we need more people to eat millets, not less. Adding a 5% tax to Hulled Millets, also called "Millet Rice", will increase prices for consumers and put off many people from eating more millets.

We request the Hon'ble Union Minister for Finance, Arun Jaitley, and other members of the GST Council to support our millet movement and treat Millet Rice as equivalent to paddy rice and grant it an exemption before it is too late.

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NOTES:

  • Nine types of millets are cultivated in India - three of them are still popular in some parts (Ragi, Jowar & Bajra) These are usually ground into flour and made into rotis, etc. The other six millets, collectively called "Husked/Hulled Millets" or "Millet Rice", are namely Foxtail Millet, Barnyard Millet(Sama), Little Millet, Kodo Millet, Proso Millet and Browntop Millet. These millets cannot be eaten without being hulled. Once hulled, you get Millet Rice.
  • According to GST RATE OF SCHEDULE OF GOODS released 18th May 2017, Chapter 11, 1104, any cereal grain which is hulled is taxed at 5% (with rice being the only exemption). This means all Millet Rices will be taxed.
  • Millet Rice is an alternative to rice, but with much more balanced nutrition content. To read more about millets, please visit https://kaulige.com/pages/about-millets
  • Kaulige Foods is an initiative to encourage consumption of millets in Bangalore. We work towards this aim by offering Millet catering services, organizing Millet cooking workshops & distributing millets via kaulige.com. Follow us on facebook.com/kaulige for more on millets.


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