Gujarat assembly to ratify GST bill this month


Newly appointed Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani and deputy CM Nitin Patel at the state BJP headquarters in Gandhinagar. The Gujarat assembly session begins on August 22.

The Gujarat assembly is all set to ratify the Constitution Amendment Bill on the goods and service tax during its two-day session beginning August 22, also the first sitting of the House after Vijay Rupani took over as chief minister.

“Apart from other business, the Constitution Amendment Bill on goods and service tax (GST) will be tabled in the House for ratification,” BJP chief whip in assembly, Pankaj Desai said on Friday.

“The two-day monsoon session of legislative assembly will take place on August 22 and 23. The bill will be introduced on first day, whereas the discussion and voting, if necessary, will take place on the next day,” he said.

 Implementation of GST, said to be the biggest tax reform after liberalisation of Indian economy, is still hanging fire, though the Central government recently cleared a major hurdle in its rollout by managing to bring opposition Congress on board. The government has set a deadline of April, 2017 for the rollout.

The GST bill, passed by both Houses of Parliament during the monsoon session, needs to be ratified by at least 15 state legislatures before the President can notify the GST Council, which will decide the new tax rate and other issues. Assam, another BJP-ruled state, became the first state in the country after its legislative assembly unanimously ratified the Constitution Amendment bill on Friday.

Ahead of the session, the BJP legislative party will hold a meeting on August 21 to welcome the newly-appointed Rupani who took over the BJP-ruled state from Anandiben Patel, deputy chief minister Nitin Patel and other cabinet members, Desai said.

“Since our Speaker Ganpat Vasava and deputy Speaker Atmaram Parmar have been inducted in the new cabinet, the House will elect a new Speaker and deputy Speaker during these two days. It is expected that the state government may also table some bills in the House during the monsoon session,” Desai said.

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