President Mukherjee nod to Constitution Amendment Bill on GST

President Mukherjee nod to Constitution Amendment Bill on GST

New Indirect tax-GST

Central GST, State GST and Integrated GST laws

The government plans to roll out the new indirect tax regime from April 1, 2017

President Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday gave assent to Constitution Amendment Bill on Goods and Services Tax (GST), a major step towards rolling out the new indirect tax regime which the Modi government wants to come into effect from April 1 next year.

Mukherjee has given approval to the bill, official sources said today.

The passage of the bill will pave the way for setting up of a GSTcouncil that will decide the tax rate, cess and surcharges.

The GST is a single indirect tax which will subsume most of the central and state taxes such as Value Added Tax (VAT), excise duty, service tax, central sales tax, additional customs duty and special additional duty of customs.

The Parliament had on August 8 passed the bill which was then circulated to state governments seeking its ratification. A Constitution amendment bill needs to be ratified by the legislative Assemblies of at least 50 per cent of the states.

The bill was sent to the President’s secretariat after as many as 17 states, BJP-ruled Assam being the first, ratified the bill.

The other states which have passed the legislation include Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Nagaland, Maharashtra, Haryana, Sikkim, Mizoram, Telangana, Goa, Odisha and Rajasthan.

Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia had recently said that the government is ahead of schedule for implementation of GST.

“Instead of 30 days kept for this (states’ ratification), it is achieved in 23 days,” he had said in a tweet.

Now that the bill has got Presidential assent, the government will notify the GST Council, which will decide on the taxrate. Headed by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, the Council will comprise state Finance Ministers.

Central GST, State GST and Integrated GST laws

The states and the Centre are working overtime and talking to stakeholders to draft the Central GST, State GST and Integrated GST laws, which are to be passed in the Winter Session of Parliament.

The CGST and IGST will be drafted on the basis of the model GST law. The states will draft their respective State GST(SGST) laws with minor variation incorporating state-based exemptions. The IGST law would deal with inter-state movement of goods and services.





GST rollout is only a matter of time, says Jaitley

finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday said the constitutional amendment Bill on a national goods and services tax (GST) would be cleared in the Rajya Sabha when put to vote. He also said reforms such as those relating to restructuring of debt of power distribution companies, draft bankruptcy code, a road map on phasing out corporate tax exemptions would be announced shortly.

Later in the day, the Bankruptcy Law Committee report was presented to Jaitley. Besides, power reforms are expected to come up in the Cabinet on Thursday. Interacting with Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum (WEF) here, Jaitley said there was room for consensus on some provisions of the land Bill; the government had allowed an ordinance on this to be lapsed.

Pointing out that power was a stressed sector, Jaitley said the government would announce restructuring of discoms’ debt in the next couple of days. “Once that happens, I am quite sure the private sector will also start participating.”

  1. He said the country was generating more power than it needed. “For the first time in history, we have surplus resource. Generation companies are facing difficulty because there are no takers for the power.” On GST, he said, “I think (introduction of) GST is only a question of time, since obstruction won’t continue indefinitely. As and when it is put to vote, I see GST becoming a reality.” The Congress and some parties had opposed the legislation in its present form in the Rajya Sabha, where the government does not have the numbers to get it passed. But Jaitley said within months the numbers in the Upper House would tilt in favour of the ruling combine. Results of the Bihar Assembly elections, due on Sunday, can change the equation in the Rajya Sabha.