GST hits hard on works of Bahubali Mastakabhisheka

Committee will be shelling out a hughe amount of Rs 12-15 crore as tax

With the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka Committee is in a fix as it has to shell out Rs 12 crore as GST, out of Rs 175 crore funds released by the state government, for the preparations for festival scheduled to be held in February 2018.

This is sure to have an impact on the development works. The construction of 12 satellite towns, to provide accommodation to the devotees visiting Shravanabelagola for the mastakabhisheka, taken up at a cost of Rs 75 crore has been handed over to Karnataka Road Development Corporation. Out of this, Rs 10.39 crore has to be paid as GST.

Similarly, Rs 38.80 lakh has to be paid as GST out of Rs 3.24 crore funds allocated for the development of KSRTC bus stand; Rs 24 lakh out of Rs 11.25 crore for construction of an attic; Rs 25 lakh out of Rs 15 crore sanctioned for Karnataka Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Board; Rs 1.20 lakh out of Rs 12 crore allocated to the Zilla Panchayat to take up various works.

Funds

The state government had issued an order, sanctioning funds for the mahotsava on June 12, 2017, when GST was not in place. While the authorities are complaining that the available funds are insufficient to meet the expenses, a considerable amount has to be paid as GST, which will affect the development works. The efforts made by the authorities concerned, seeking additional funds from the Centre has not yielded any results.

Speaking to DH, Mastakabhisheka Mahotsava Special Officer Varaprasad Reddy said, "The Centre has slashed taxes for various items after a meeting held recently, but there is no clear information. The Road Development Corporation is in contact with the department of Commercial Taxes. Cement, sanitary materials used for toilets, iron, come under 28% slab."

District in-charge Minister A Manju said, when the government released funds, GST was not in force. "Now, Rs 12 crore to Rs 15 crore has to be paid as GST, which will affect the ongoing works. I will meet Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and explain the problems to him. I will seek an additional Rs 25 crore. I will also visit New Delhi after October 15 and submit a proposal, seeking funds again,” Manju said.

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