Published On: Tue, May 5th, 2015

Congress may back GST bill

New Delhi: Congress may back the economic reform bill related to Goods and Services Tax (GST).

Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi

Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi

Sources said the Congress supports the GST Bill in principle as the previous UPA government was also in favour of passing the tax reform legislation, but had objected only to the way the government bypassed procedures while bringing it in the Lok Sabha last week.

Congress Spokesperson Sushmita Dev made it clear that her party was not against the bill which was their baby, but it was against the procedure being adopted.

“GST is our baby. We do not oppose as a matter of policy. What we are opposing is the procedure,” she said.

On April 26 when the GST bill was moved in Lok Sabha by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, members of Congress, led by Sonia Gandhi, along with those of TMC, Left and NCP had staged a walk out after their plea for referring the Constitution amendment Bill to the Standing Committee was not accepted.

The protest of Congress, was then, however, on the technicalities, and not on the content of the bill.

The GST bill will need the support of two-third members in both houses of Parliament. While the ruling alliance has a comfortable majority in Lok Sabha, it needs the support of opposition parties in Rajya Sabha.

Congress is likely to follow Mamata Banerjee’s party, and will give in-principle support to the Modi government over the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill, which was their baby but the Congress is in no mood to support the controversial land acquisition bill.

The Congress leader and leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said: “There will be no compromise on the land bill.”

TST

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