GST instrument of growth but no final nod yet, says Congress

New Delhi, July 29 (IANS) Dubbing the GST as an “instrument of growth”, the Congress however said on Friday that it has not yet given its final nod for the bill’s passage as its apprehensions had still not been addressed.

“There is no final assurance yet given to government either by Congress or other Opposition parties,” Congress spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala told a press conference.

“GST is not a political instrument but an instrument of growth which was blocked by then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and other BJP leaders like Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj,” he added.

The Congress leader said that “issues” are still being deliberated and the party is willing to negotiate.

“GST shouldn’t be only consensus based but it should also reflect the will of the nation,” he said.

The Congress, however welcomed the Union Cabinet decision to approve key changes in the proposed legislation, including dropping the proposed one per cent additional tax on inter-state sale.

The Congress demands on the bill include capping GST rate at 18 percent and mentioning this in the Constitution amendment Bill. It also wants an independent dispute resolution mechanism.

“The government has acceded to demands made by Congress and it hopes to persuade the government to agree on other issues,” Surjewala said.

Earlier on the day, the government said it was hopeful of the GST Bill being passed during Parliament’s ongoing monsoon session.

It has also listed it on the Rajya Sabha’s agenda next week.



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