Jaitley writes to Andhra, Telangana CMs over GST Bill nod

    Vijayawada/Hyderabad, Aug 16 (PTI) With Parliamentpassing the GST Bill in the just-concluded session, UnionFinance Minister Arun Jaitley has now asked Andhra Pradesh andTelangana to ensure its early ratification. Jaitley has written separate but identical letters toAndhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and hisTelangana counterpart K Chandrasekhar Rao in this regard. "The Constitution (122nd Amendment) Bill, 2014 isrequired to be ratified by the legislatures of not less thanhalf of the States before it is presented to the President ofIndia for assent. "When assented to by the President, the Bill will beenacted as the Constitution (101st Amendment) Act, 2016,"Jaitley said in letters to Naidu and Rao. He wanted the two states to ratify it, if necessary,by convening a special session of the legislatures. "The target date for introduction of GST has been setas April 1, 2017. For introducing the Goods and Services Taxin the country, after amendment of the Constitution, a set oftwo enabling legislations will need to be enacted byParliament and one enabling legislation will need to beenacted by all state legislatures for implementation of GST. "In the interim period, necessary IT infrastructureand administrative arrangements have to be put in place at theCentral and the state levels before April 2017," Jaitley said. These legal, administrative and infrastructuralchanges could only be put in place after the Constitution hasbeen suitably amended, the Finance Minister said. "Hence, to ensure GST is implemented in the country atthe appointed date, it is imperative that the Constitution(122nd Amendment) Bill, 2014 is ratified by your statelegislature(s) at the earliest," Jaitley added. In the letters, he listed the salient features of theGST and the proposed GST Council. "It is also proposed the Union Government shallcompensate the states for any revenue losses caused to them onaccount of implementation of GST for a period of five years. "Introduction of GST will be one of the most importanteconomic reforms in the country. GST seeks to subsume manyindirect taxes at the Central and State level. GST willsimplify and harmonise the indirect tax regime. Further, GSTwill broaden the tax base, and result in better tax compliancedue to a robust IT infrastructure," Jaitley said. PTI DBV/VVKRSY SKBAS

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