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To implement GST a headache, to be an ex-finance minister a luxury, says Arun Jaitley

‘Clumsy drafting’ is a bit too extreme in expression, says Jaitley.

By: Express News Service | Published: August 4, 2016 1:43:23 am
GST, GST bill, Rajya Sabha, arun jaitley, GST discussion, Rajya sabha discussion, goods and services tax, gst bill pass, parliament, congress, indian express news, GST bill news, GST bill updates, india news, finance minister Arun Jaitley. Source: Renuka Puri

Clumsy drafting

“I think P Chidambaram mentioned that the bill had clumsy drafting because it says that some of the revenue collected will not be part of the consolidated fund of the Centre or the states and the argument was that every revenue has to go into the consolidated fund… ‘Clumsy drafting’ is a bit too extreme in expression…

“I thought that probably the best draft person India ever had was B N Rao, who aided Babasaheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar. And the phrase which you call clumsy drafting is verbatim the same, if you picked up Article 268 (2) of the original Constitution. This is Rao’s draft, which Dr Ambedkar as chairman of the drafting committee forwarded.”

To Chidambaram again

“To implement a GST is a headache, to be a former finance minister is a luxury now.”

Tax rates

“We will try and keep the rate as low as possible, certainly much lower than what the present situation is. And as compliance increases, the possibility of that rate coming down further would be there…

“We must trust the sense of responsibility of the states who belong to the same political parties as us, who in their last meeting said that our guiding principle is going to be, one, we will lower the burden of tax… We are guided by two factors — 27 per cent is too high, it is inflationary, it costs the people, so it should come down… The second they said we will collect what is essential for our present revenue requirement.”

Finance bills

“We have absolutely no intention, in any way, to bypass the constitutional provisions… We will fully comply with the Constitution and precedence…

“It would be unreasonable to give an assurance [on finance bills rather than money bills]… The matter will be discussed with the Opposition parties before moving ahead.”

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