Punjab Assembly passes 16 Bills in absence of Congress MLAs
The opposition party Congress on Monday continued to boycott the assembly proceedings of the Budget session.
Chandigarh: Punjab Assembly on Monday passed 16 bills, including Punjab Motor Vehicles Taxation (Amendment) Bill 2013 and Punjab Contract Farming Bill 2013 before the House was adjourned sine die. Meanwhile, the opposition party Congress on Monday continued to boycott the assembly proceedings of the Budget session in protest against the non-revocation of the suspension against its nine MLAs.
Among the major bills, Punjab assembly passed the Punjab Motor Vehicles Taxation (Amendment) Bill 2013, whereby tax has been imposed on the transfer of the ownership of the motor vehicle including two-wheelers. With this amendment, the rate of tax on all kinds of vehicles would be in the range of Rs 500 per vehicle to Rs 15,000 per vehicle. However, no tax would be levied in case of ownership owing to death or transfer to insurance company for settlement claims, the Bill said. The amendment in the Punjab Motor Vehicles Taxation (Amendment) Bill 2013 will fetch an additional income of Rs 25 crore to the state exchequer per annum. Punjab Ancient, Historical Monuments, Archeological Sites, and Cultural Heritage Maintenance Board Bill 2013 was also passed which is aimed to provide for a dedicated fund for the conservation and preservation of protected and unprotected built heritage of the state.
A cess at a rate of 1 per cent has been imposed on the construction of roads, bridges, flyovers, ROB, RUBs taken by the state government and cess would also be levied on construction of all the buildings costing more than Rs 50 crore constructed by the agencies of the state, as per the Bill. Under Punjab Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill 2013, E-Trip system has been introduced for recording the intrastate transactions which would help in curb the incidents of tax evasion and it would lead to additional revenue of Rs 200-300 crore per annum. Besides, VAT rate on cigarettes has also been hiked to 55 per cent which would fetch Rs 100 crore to state exchequer. Tax Deducted at Source on work contracts has also been hiked from 5 to 6 per cent under Punjab VAT Amendment Bill which is likely to generate Rs 50 crore per annum to the state.
Other bills which were passes on Monday included Punjab State Cancer and Drug Addiction Treatment Infrastructure Bill 2013, Punjab Municipal Corporation (Amendment) Bill 2013, Punjab Community Participation in Municipalities Bill 2013, Punjab Rent (Amendment) Bill 2013, Punjab State Election Commission (Amendment) Bill 2013 and Punjab Excise (Amendment) Bill 2013. Punjab Cooperative Societies (Amendment) Bill 2013, The Prisons (Punjab Amendment) Bill 2013, Punjab Educational Institutions (Prohibition of Ragging) Bill 2013, Punjab Laws (Special Provisions) Bill 2013, Punjab Lokpal (Amendment) Bill 2013 and Punjab Lokpal (Second Amendment) Bill 2013 were also passed.