GST rollout: except J-K pass GST legislation

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Kerala on Wednesday issued an ordinance approving the SGST Act, while West Bengal had issued it on June 15. Given the special status under the Constitution, J&K needs to ratify all GST-related laws in its Assembly, unlike states which had to pass only SGST Act.
All states and union territories (UTs), except Jammu & Kashmir, have passed the State GST Act and are on board for the rollout of the goods and services tax (GST) from the midnight of June 30.

Two opposition-ruled states of Kerala and West Bengal have issued an ordinance to approve the SGST Act, while all other states and UTs have passed it in their respective legislative assemblies. “As of (now), all the states and union territories (having Assemblies), except the State of Jammu and Kashmir, have passed the State Goods and Services Tax (SGST) Act,” the finance ministry stated.

Kerala on Wednesday issued an ordinance approving the SGST Act, while West Bengal had issued it on June 15. Given the special status under the Constitution, J&K needs to ratify all GST-related laws in its Assembly, unlike other states which had to pass only SGST Act.

The ruling Peoples Democratic Party-Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state is facing stiff opposition from state for clearing GST bills as they fear it would lead to loss of fiscal autonomy of the state.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had on Wednesday said that if any state remains out from rolling out GST regime, both its traders and consumers will suffer loss and won’t be eligible for compensation package. “Because they will not get the benefit of input tax, they will have to pay tax twice and the consumers will get materials which are costlier than the rest of the country. Also, compensation package won’t be given to states who do not implement GST,” Jaitley said. The new indirect tax regime will be launched in Parliament’s historic Central Hall on the midnight of June 30-July 1, reminiscent of India’s tryst with destiny moment at the midnight of August 14, 1947.

Asmaa Mubita is a Kenyan journalist of international repute with over fifteen years of experience in broadcast journalism. Asmaa Mubita began his journalism career at the Kenyan state broadcaster (KBC) and later worked at the KTN owned by the Standard Group and Citizen Television, the flagship brand of Royal Media Services. These exploits together with his reporting experience with the Voice of America, CNN and BBC have been rewarded with local and global recognition.