Implement GST with benign hand, says PC

Implement GST with benign hand, says PC

The Congress on Tuesday cautioned the Modi government against rushing through the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime without adequate trials.

Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said the July 1 rollout of the GST, as planned by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, was impractical and undesirable and a wise and correct date would be October 1.

Chidambaram also asked the government to implement the GST with “benign hands” and not send the taxman after businesses for minor mistakes, which were bound to happen during the transition period.

“There should be forbearance. If the taxman is unleashed, it will lead to a pushback or a backlash,” he said. The former finance minister also slammed the government for “imperfect” GST Bills and denying the Rajya Sabha the opportunity to improve them.

“The Rajya Sabha could have improved the bills, but that opportunity was denied when the government stubbornly turned down the demand that the bills be introduced, debated and passed as non-money bills,” Chidambaram said.

The Rajya Sabha MP said he had expected greater clarity about the state of economy after the Budget Session of Parliament that would come to an end on Wednesday.

“Unfortunately, there is no such clarity. At the end of the session, we are no wiser than we were at the beginning of the session,” he said.

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