New Delhi: Trinamool Congress today came out in strong support of the government's ambitious GST Bill, which is being scrutinized by a Parliamentary Committee, saying the measure is “good for the states, good for the centre and good for the nation”.
“GST (Goods and Services Tax) is a commitment we have made in our manifesto. We believe the bill should be passed in the Monsoon session,” Trinamool leader Derek O'Brien told PTI. He said GST is “good for the states, good for the centre and good for the country.”
The support from West Bengal's ruling party is significant as the Modi government is keen to see the bill being adopted by the Rajya Sabha Select Committee at the earliest so it could be considered by the Upper House of Parliament in the upcoming session beginning July 21.
The Committee is meeting on July 17, when it is expected to wind up discussions on the bill and consider adoption, possibly in another meeting, sources said. According to sources, the bill is likely to sail through in the 21-member Select Committee as Congress and Samajwadi Party are the only two parties strongly opposed to it. Congress, which has moved 10 amendments to the legislation, is likely to give a dissent note in case the bill is adopted, sources said.
One of the provisions being opposed by Congress relates to the GST Council which provides for one-third representation of the Centre. Congress wants diluted to make it one-fourth of the Council.
Trinamool is on the government's side on this, the sources said.
The RS panel may endorse a majority of existing clauses in this long-pending Bill, except for the provisions about compensation to states and the composition of GST Council with a diluted Central role.