August 13, 2016 2:29:14 am
Assam became the first state in the country to ratify the Goods and Services Tax Bill when the Assembly passed it unanimously on Friday.
The bill was tabled in the Assembly by state Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. After Speaker Ranjeet Kumar Das disallowed a plea by the Congress to discuss the likely impact of the bill in Assam, all parties ratified it unanimously.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said Assam would be remembered for being the first state to ratify the bill. “It is a matter of pride that we passed it on the last day of the budget session of the state Assembly,” Sonowal said.
Finance minister Sarma said the state would get back 42 per cent of the central portion of the GST, which would be a huge benefit for Assam. “The GST will also have a special concession option for the Northeastern and Himalayan states,” he claimed. “Moreover, we will also be able to collect special taxes during natural calamities in order to meet the unseen gaps, provided we get an approval of the GSTC,” Sarma added.
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“Assam leads the way. It is a matter of immense joy and pride that Assam Assembly today became the first in the country to ratify the historic GST Bill, which promises to transform India. We are grateful to the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for showing us the path and Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley for mentoring this biggest reform initiative ever in independent India,” Sarma tweeted soon afterwards.
He also said that while prices of over 1,500 items would come down once all states ratify the GST Bill, the government would be able to arrest inflation by about two per cent.
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