While the Centre is ready to launch the ambitious Goods and Services Tax (GST) on a grand note on July 1, former finance minister P Chidambaram feels that the country is underprepared to come up with this new tax regime. A day ahead of the special midnight June 30-July 1 meeting convened by the NDA government on GST implementation, the Congress on Thursday announced it will keep away from it. Asked about the decision of the party, Chidambaram told on India Today that the country is not prepared for the implementation. He further backed his thoughts on GST giving the example of demonetisation that was imposed in November last year that banned Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes. Chidambaram said that the government had claimed that it was ready at the time of demonetisation but their unpreparedness was shown up within a few days of it being invoked. He continued saying that he would like to believe that the government is fully ready but what he thinks is that glitches will become evident if it gets implemented on the proposed date. Chidambaram also said that he has travelled around the country and has talked to dozens of businesspersons about GST. After interacting with them, he revealed that businesses are still unprepared.
The Congress was in a dilemma over attending the special midnight event in Parliament on June 30 to mark the implementation of the GST. However, after the meeting of Congress President Sonia Gandhi with former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh along with other leaders, the decision was taken to boycott the event, reported PTI. The news agency reported while quoting the sources that some leaders boycotting the event feel that the new tax regime is being implemented in a haste and all aspects have not been taken into consideration and may lead to negatively impacting small traders and businessmen.
WATCH | Congress decides it will not attend GST launch
Mamata Banerjee led-Trinamool Congress has reportedly already announced its decision to boycott the event and the Left parties willl do the same too.