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Congress Not Opposed to GST, Just Raised a Few Concerns: Surjewala

Targeting the Prime Minister and his government on the issue, he said that the people who opposed the GST Bill bitterly when the UPA was in power were the "the present Prime Minister, Finance Minister and External Minister and also the entire BJP".

Press Trust Of India

Updated:July 6, 2016, 7:48 AM IST
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Congress Not Opposed to GST, Just Raised a Few Concerns: Surjewala
File photo of Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala.

New Delhi: Amid reports that the government will be reaching out to it on the Goods and Service Tax Bill, Congress on Tuesday said it is "not opposing" the key reform measure and has only come forward with three concrete suggestions in the interest of the common man.

"We're not opposing the GST Bill rather Congress conceived, brought and introduced the GST Bill. However, the Congress leadership, in common people's interest, has come forward with three concrete suggestions," party's chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala said.

Targeting the Prime Minister and his government on the issue, he said that the people who opposed the GST Bill bitterly when the UPA was in power were the "the present Prime Minister, Finance Minister and External Minister and also the entire BJP".

He said that in this country an individual pays nearly 30 per cent in income tax, 15 per cent in service tax, and all that Congress wants is to put a constitutional cap or outer limit beyond which one cannot impose tax on ordinary people.

"According to us, that shouldn't be more than 18 per cent failing which people like the present Delhi CM can always impose an Entertainment Tax of 40 per cent...," he said.

Besides, he said, 1 per cent additional tax which is sought to be charged by manufacturing states must be done away with. GST means a universal tax regime across India and shouldn't vary with the states.

Thirdly, GST Council shouldn't be a judge in its own cause and there must be an independent dispute resolution mechanism which is in consonance with the constitutional principles, he said.

His remarks came amid reports that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, keen to get the landmark bill cleared during the monsoon session beginning in July, is likely to meet top Congress leaders to win over support of the principal opposition party.

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