No Movement on GST After PM Modi’s ‘Chai pe Charcha’: Congress

NEW DELHI: The Congress is still waiting for the government to respond to its objections to the Goods and Services Tax, which its president Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh conveyed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his colleagues over tea, last week, party sources told NDTV.

After the discussion between the top leadership of the two sides over tea, the first in 18 months of the Modi government, there has been no forward movement from the government they said.

Mrs Gandhi and Dr Singh conveyed to PM Modi and his colleagues, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Parliamentary Affairs minister M Venkaiah Naidu, that the party’s position on three counts . It wants 1 per cent additional levy on the tax in manufacturing states to go, a cap of 18 per cent on the Goods and Service tax and an independent dispute redressal mechanism.

So far, the government is yet to formally send any firm proposal on the amendments the Congress is seeking. Government sources say they hope to send a response once Mrs Gandhi returns from her medical check abroad, later this week.

The Congress has diverse opinions on whether to support the constitutional amendment for GST in this session or not. The party is expected to discuss this issue formally at a party strategy committee meeting after the party president is back. The Congress sources say given the different views within the party, on this issue, the predominant feeling is that the amendment should not be rushed through.

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