Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu has ruled out the possibility of bringing the petroleum products under Goods and Services Tax (GST) purview. The State would incur a revenue loss of ?6,000 crore if it was done, he said in the Assembly on Monday.
While moving ‘The Andhra Pradesh Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2018’, Mr. Ramakrishnudu said that there were demands from various quarters to exempt petroleum products from Value Added Tax (VAT) purview and bring it under the purview of GST.
As per the GST Act, the compensation would be paid for only five years and already two years have passed. There was no certainty on how much the Central government would compensate for revenue loss arising out of the move. For how many years the Union government would give compensation was also an unanswered question. It was not just Andhra Pradesh, but a majority of other States were opposing the proposal, he said.
Support for GST was fading fast. “From one nation, one tax it has become one Modi.” The States have “absolutely no say” in the GST Council. Even if all the States put up an united face, a resolution of their choice cannot be passed if the present voting pattern were to be considered. The Centre has 33.33 % votes, while the States have 66.67%. To pass a resolution, 75% votes were required, which was impossible in the present system, he said.
The State government has been requesting exemption for the TTD, handlooms, forest products, fishing nets etc which were not covered under the VAT previously, but the Centre hasn’t responded so far.
But, when the elections were due in Gujarat, necessary changes were made at lightning speed as the BJP feared that it would face a drubbing there, he alleged.
Referring to devolution of funds, Mr. Ramakrishnudu said 10 % increase “was a drama.” Though the States’ share in devolution of funds has been increased to 42 % from 32 %, a major chunk of funds received goes towards implementation of Centrally-sponsored schemes, which are 27 at present.
Earlier, BJP MLA Akula Satyanarayana Raju said that total funds received by the State government stood at 62% even after implementation of the GST and demanded an explanation from the Minister.
BJP floor leader P. Vishnu Kumar Raju suggested that the government bring petroleum products under purview of GST to bring relief to the consumers.
Source :- Thehindu.com