BJP tells state govt to clarify traders' doubts over GST

BJP tells state govt to clarify traders' doubts over GST

The principal Opposition in the Legislative Assembly, the BJP on Thursday urged the state government to immediately take steps to clarify all doubts raised by the traders pertaining to implementation of the proposed Goods and Service Tax (GST) in the state.

Visveswara Hegde Kageri (BJP) said a large number of traders is still clueless on how billing has to be done from July 1 when the GST is scheduled to be rolled out across the country. Information pertaining to the new tax regime has not yet reached small traders. The state government has erred in this regard, he charged, while participating in a discussion on the Karnataka Goods and Services Tax Bill, 2017.

The manufacturers are expected to benefit hugely under the GST regime. It is the responsibility of the State Commercial Taxes department to ensure that the manufacturers pass on the benefit to the consumers.  The department should have taken up an awareness campaign aimed at educating the consumers. But nothing much has been done, Kageri added.

Besides, the state government has delayed introduction of the GST bill in the legislature. The legislators would have given valuable suggestions and the government could have raised them in the GST Council if the bill was introduced in the House much before. Now there is hardly any time before the state government. Karnataka has been in the forefront of bringing in tax reforms. The state should have passed the GST bill ahead of other states, he said.

M T Krishnappa of the JD(S) suggested that the government should take measures to provide tax exemption to copra and arecanut, While Laxman Savadi (BJP) and Shivanand Patil (Congresss) sought tax exemption for dry grapes.

Congress’ Vadnal Rajanna said certain goods that attract 5% VAT now will fall under 3% tax bracket from July. The traders are unaware as to how the 2% difference in tax will be made good under the new regime, he added.

Assembly passes state GST bill

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said Karnataka is prepared to implement the GST in the state.
All the trade bodies have given their consent for the implementation. Even Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has commended preparations made by the state. Subsequently, the Assembly unanimously passed the GST Bill. The Assembly also passed the Karnataka Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2017, seeking to empower the state government to collect tax on petrol, diesel and aviation fuel. The government will continue to collect tax on these fuel until they are brought under the GST.

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