Congress has decided not to attend the Goods and Services Tax (GST) midnight session on June 30 in Parliament, said senior party leader Satyavrat Chaturvedi on Thursday. The decision came after Congress President Sonia Gandhi met former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh along with other leaders today. Party leaders were divided on the issue, as a group within feels that the GST was the party’s brainchild which has been now taken over by the ruling BJP. So, they feel, the party should attend the special meeting convened in the central hall of Parliament to launch the GST.
However, some leaders feel that the GST is being implemented in a haste and all aspects have not been taken into consideration leading to harassment of small traders and businessmen and thus, the party should abstain.
Trinamool Congress has already announced its decision to boycott the event. The Left leaders are also not inclined to attend the special GST meeting and are set to skip it, along with some other opposition parties. CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury has already questioned the government on “hurrying” into introducing GST and recalled that the ruling BJP had opposed the system when it was in the opposition.
The government will use the circular-shaped Central Hall to launch the new taxation system that is set to dramatically re-shape the over USD 2 trillion economy.
A gong will be sounded at midnight to usher in the GST. Modi will be the key speaker at the function. PTI quoted the sources as saying that former prime minister Singh is also unlikely to attend the event, with a party leader holding the view that the party’s decision is applicable for all. Earlier it was reported that Singh will attend the midnight session.