Rohan Hede of Goa and Jagdeep Singh of Punjab have been unanimously elected as chairman and secretary general, respectively, of SME Pharma Industries Confederation (SPIC) for which elections were held recently. SPIC is an umbrella confederation of small & medium pharmaceutical manufacturing units spread all over India except tax holiday states of HP, Uttaranchal, J&K, Sikkim & North Eastern states.

In the election, Lalit Jain has been elected as senior vice-chairman while Vinay Jain, Aloke Chaudhury and Ramesh Arora have been elected as vice-chairman. Saurabh Gupta, Om Saraf, Animesh Roy, Vinod Gupta and P S Bhatnagar are the new joint secretaries elected in the elections held its inaugural all India delegates meet at New Delhi.

In the delegates meet, officiating general secretary Jagdeep Singh explained about the problems being faced by the small pharma manufacturers in the non-excise free zones after the introduction of MRP-based excise collection by the central government. Comparing the government decision in this regard with that of Mohammed Bin Tuglaq's reformation, Jagdeep Singh said while the government lost revenue, the general public was made to pay through its nose as MRP based excise was no deterrent to units in excise free areas. While excise free heavens were already in existence since 2003, MRP based excise brought in hundreds of big units to these areas to avail of huge disparity between these areas and rest of India.

Jagdeep Singh said the SSIs across India with more than 4000 units suffered the most. SPIC was unrelenting in its fight for parity. A modicum was achieved in this year's budget when excise on pharma was halved to 8 per cent and the recent across the board 4 per cent excise cut has eased the position further. He called upon delegates to continue their fight to get increase in abatement rate from the current 35 to 60 per cent as also increase in exemption limit from 1.5 crore to 4 crore.