AHMEDABAD: Union finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday indicated that Goods and Service Tax (GST) could come into force earlier than expected. Addressing a gathering at Tagore Hall in the city on the occasion of the Modi government completing one year, Jaitley said that GST could be implemented in the country from as early as January 1, 2016.
“GST is a uniform tax system and will allow seamless transfer of goods and services. It will also help in increasing the GDP of the country by 1-1.5%,” said Jaitley. The Rajya Sabha MP from Gujarat also said that the Union government is expecting an increase of 14-15% in Income Tax collections in 2015-16.
Taking a dig at Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and other leaders of the party, Jaitley said that the new policy of the opposition is to block development. “There is a Hollywood actor who became a governor of a state in US some time back. About him, people used to say how much does he know, when will he know? Same is the case with Congress leaders. Rahul Gandhi did not know that his own government in 2013 had scrapped Food Park project in Amethi and his party blames Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” said Jaitley.
Listing the achievements of the central government in the past one year, Jaitley said that in the past 15 days more than 7.5 crore people have been covered under the recently introduced accident and life insurance schemes by the Prime Minister. “More than 15.5 crore new bank accounts have been opened under the PM Jan Dhan Yojana in the country and around 12.5 crore people have already started getting cash through direct transfer,” said Jaitley.
On former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Jaitley said that personally he was not a critic of Singh. “Singh was not allowed to do what he could do as man of economics. It was widely said that he was a PM in office but not in power,” said Jaitley.