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GST Bill to be taken up in next Parliament session: Jaitley

Arun Jaitley

New Delhi: The GST Bill, which will bring the “single biggest tax reform since Independence”, will be taken up in the next Parliament session, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today while asserting that concerns of all states have been take care of in the new measure.

“I do not intend to pass it (GST Bill) in the current Parliament session. We will formally take it up in the next session,” Jaitley said in the Rajya Sabha, while speaking on the Appropriation (No 4) Bill, 2014.

The Bill, which was returned, authorises payment and appropriation of certain additional sums from and out of the Consolidated Fund of India for 2014-15. It was passed by Lok Sabha on December 10.

Describing the GST reform as a “win-win situation” for both the Centre and the states, the Finance Minister said the bill would not have “fear of the unknown” unlike Value Added Tax (VAT).

Noting that he has held wide consultations in drafting the bill, including with the Empowered Committee on GST, Jaitley said states would be compensated on account of CST and the first installment would be made before March 31 next year.

Seeking to allay apprehensions of states, Jaitley said their interests are more than adequately protected and does not foresee a situation where states would be the losers.

Jaitley said the government would give “constitutional assurance” in terms of compensating the possible losses incurred by states.

GST reform would strengthen the principle of “co-operative federalism” as Centre and state would need to work together to take decisions which would require 75 per cent majority approval.

The Constitution Amendment Bill on Goods and Services Tax (GST) was approved by the Cabinet earlier this week.

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