Various trade organisations along with civil society groups in Jammu and Kashmir on Monday formed a coordination committee to oppose implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the state in its present form.
Jammu and Kashmir Coordination Committee (JKCC), representing all trade and industrial organisations besides civil society formations in the valley, has been formed to resist implementation of the GST in the state, its convener Siraj Ahmad said.
Speaking to reporters, Ahmad said there are adverse implications leading to infringement of the state’s autonomy and constitution by the proposed extension of the GST regime. The GST, as a system, goes against the letter and spirit of the autonomy of the state, Ahmad said.
It reduces the power and flexibility of the state government to pursue its own fiscal policy as well as public expenditure policy which is aligned to its own requirements, he said. Ahmad said if the new tax regime is implemented in its present form, neither the state legislature nor the state cabinet would have any say on taxation matters.
The new body warned the government against extending the 101st constitutional amendment to the state. “We outrightly reject the extension of 101st amendment. The state government should come up with a separate legislation on having a separate tax law for the state that may synchronise with the law passed by the central government,” the JKCC convener said. Any model prepared by the government should be put in public domain for extensive discussions over that, he added.
Ahmad said all business establishments would hoist black flags on their establishments on Tuesday. The business fraternity would also hold a sit-in near the assembly in order to mount pressure on the legislators to support them.
The biggest tax reform in independent India was rolled out in the country at the stroke of the mid-night — the intervening night of June 30-July 1 — by President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.