India’s second-largest gift chain has been hit by a ban on its outlets from opening as of December 31.
Gift shops are being barred from opening on Sundays and are expected to shut down by February next year.
In its latest move, the government on Wednesday also imposed a ban in its six biggest cities, barring the entry of gift shops for a period of five days and a ban of online sales from December 31, 2018.
The ban on gift shops has been in effect since January 2018.
Gains and losses of up to Rs 1,500 crore per day are to be declared in the next two weeks, the commerce ministry said.
It also banned online and mobile gift shops from January 1, 2019.
Gifts to the poor and underprivileged are banned from the list, and those that offer free gift cards to the public are also banned.
The ministry said the ban on online and digital gift shops will not impact retail sales.
“The ministry of commerce and industry has taken steps to protect the interests of the Indian consumer and promote the growth of the country’s largest and most trusted brand, Ganesha,” the ministry said in a statement.
The ministry said that all the gift shops on the list are listed under the gift shop tax, a levy that applies to every gift shop and does not include online or mobile gift sales.
The GST was introduced in August 2017 and is levied on goods and services made on a retail basis.
It was rolled out across all states and territories on November 1.
The government had said that the tax will not affect the sales of gift cards or gift cards with a retail value of Rs 20,000 or less.
The gift shops, which operate out of four centres in the capital Delhi, have a total retail turnover of over Rs 1.2 lakh crore, the statement said.
It said the government was not taking any punitive action against gift shops.
“The GST Council has not taken any punitive measures against the companies,” it said.