PM Narendra Modi-led NDA government looks all set to score a big victory with the crucial GST Bill likely to be tabled as early as the Monday or Tuesday next week. If television reports are to be believed, then the BJP-led government has managed to get most regional parties on board, with the likes of Samajwadi Party also supporting the bill. The government is still in the process of building consensus, and earlier this week Finance Minister Arun Jaitley met state FMs and the Goods and Services Tax Bill may very well pass the Rajya Sabha test.
FM Arun Jaitley is said to have separately met leaders of Samajwadi Party (SP), Congress, Left parties and JD(U) and discussed with them provisions of the GST Bill. It is also reported that Jaitley met Ghulam Nabi Azad and former FM P Chidambaram in Parliament. Jaitley reached out to Anand Sharma as well, apart from meeting SP leader Ram Gopal Yadav and CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury.
Samajwadi Party’s Naresh Agarwal said, “We are demanding the turnover limit to be increased. We support GST, but BJP must speak to all parties.” According to CNN News 18, Derek O’Brien, D Raja, Naresh Agarwal and Sitaram Yechury met FM Arun Jaitley, and most differences on the GST Bill seem to have been sorted out. In a bid to push the big reform, that has been pending in Rajya Sabha for quite some time now, PM Modi-led Cabinet on Wednesday cleared changes in the GST Constitutional Amendment Bill and dropped the 1% manufacturing tax clause. It also provided guarantee that it will compensate states for any revenue loss in the first five years of rollout of the proposed indirect tax regime. By doing away with this 1% tax, Modi government has met one of the three key demands over which Congress has been blocking the GST Bill in Rajya Sabha.
Once the Rajya Sabha approves the legislation, the amended Bill will have to go back to the Lok Sabha again for approval.
WATCH: GST Constitutional Amendment Bill: Cabinet approves changes
The monsoon session of the Parliament ends on August 12.