Mamata backs BJP on GST, calls it ‘pro-people’


West Bengal chief minister, Mamata Banerjee, on Tuesday announced that her party would support the GST Bill within Parliament.

She instructed West Bengal Finance Minister Dr Amit Mitra, who is also the chairman of the Empowered Committee of Finance Ministers on GST, to ensure that the bill is passed on the floor of the Parliament during the monsoon session.

Her statement comes as a major breather for the ruling BJP whose prime concern is to get the GST passed, especially in the Rajya Sabha, where it does not have sufficient strength to get the bill passed.

“I have ideological differences with BJP and I politically oppose them. But that does not mean I will create a hindrance for passing a pro- people bill like of GST,” the chief minister said, while addressing a felicitation ceremony organised by the different chambers of commerce.

Read:Finance minister Arun Jaitley hints at GST rollout next year

“The bill is long pending and hence try to develop a consensus on the bill during the next two meetings of the empowered committee,”  she directed Mitra.

Mamata also attacked the Union government for allegedly misguiding enforcement agencies against the business community.

Agencies like the CBI, the Enforcement Branch and the Income Tax department are terrorising the business community and hence many industrialists are leaving the country after winding up their businesses,”she said.

Mamata appealed to industrialists to not waste any more time investing in the state and asked them to stop giving recession-related excuses for not doing so.

“What is recession? It is created by the people. If you are scared of recession then what is the point of doing business? You should not waste time in discussions, but start investing immediately. And if you face any problem my team of ministers and officers are always ready to help you and solve your problems,”she said.

According to her, the automobile and manufacturing industries would be her focus in the coming days. Land would not be a problem in setting up industries, she asserted, while making it clear that she would continue with her policy on no government role for industry land procurement.

“We want to regain Bengal’s past glory in the automobile and manufacturing sectors. Land will not be a problem. We do want anything forcefully. But we are ready with our land bank from where land can be allotted to industries,” she added.


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