Chhattisgarh clears GST Bill, to implement new tax regime from July 1

Business Standard By R Krishna Das April 28, 2017. 16:50 IST

After Bihar, Jharkhand, Telangana and Rajasthan, becomes fifth state to clear the decks for GST

Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly on Friday passed the state Goods and Service Tax (GST) Bill, 2017, becoming the fifth state in the country to adopt and begin implementation of the new tax regime from July 1.

In the special assembly session convened on Friday, the bill was passed by a voice vote after three hours of debate. The other states that had adopted the GST Bill include Bihar, Jharkhand, Telangana and Rajasthan.

Chief Minister Raman Singh termed the development as "historic" while adding that it was a big leap forward to promote national integration. The tax reform would give shape to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's concept of one country, one tax and one market, he said.

Stating that the bill aimed at simplifying the tax system and expanding the tax base, Singh further said: "Initially, the biggest concern of the states was to compensate the loss." He, however, added that Chhattisgarh succeeded in getting the required compensation for the loss incurred due to the implementation of GST.

With producer states being compensated for revenue loss for the next five years, Singh assured that there was no reason to worry about the state's finances. Moreover, the state's economy is expected to grow after the tax reform.

Meanwhile, Leader of the Opposition T S Singhdeo said that some of the provisions in the GST Law could cause problems to the common man and hence needed analysis. Experiences from other countries can be helpful in this regard, said Singhdeo. Other issues including rising inflation, the return of the 'inspector raj' and hardships faced by small traders were also raised by the Opposition.

State Commercial Taxes Minister Amar Agrawal, who tabled the bill, said camps would be organised across the state to address queries about GST.

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