Make arrangements for speedy GST rollout: Narendra Modi to states
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said the states should make legislative arrangements "without delay" for GST rollout from July 1. Delivering the closing remarks at the third meeting of the Governing Council of Niti Aayog, he also urged states, local governments and NGOs to decide goals for 2022 and work in mission mode towards achieving them. "The Prime Minister reiterated that the legislative arrangements at the state-level for GST should be put in place without delay," an official statement said. The consensus on Goods and Services Tax (GST) reflects the spirit of 'one nation, one aspiration, one determination', Modi earlier said in his opening remarks at the meeting. The GST, which will subsume central excise, service tax, Value Added Tax (VAT) and other local levies, is scheduled to be rolled out from July 1. Parliament has already passed the supporting GST bills and the states are also required to pass their separate legislations for smooth implementation of the new tax regime. The prime minister also called upon states to use the Government e-Marketplace portal for procurement of goods and services as it would help in reducing corruption and increase transparency in the government procurement. He said the use of technologies such as BHIM and Aadhaar would result in significant savings for the states. Observing that funds such as district mineral, CAMPA and the construction workers welfare would provide significant boost to the resources of the state, he asked Niti Aayog to come up with a roadmap for better utilisation of such funds by the states. Referring to the change in the budget dates, he said in a country where agricultural income is exceedingly important, budgets should be prepared immediately after the receipt of agricultural incomes for the year. He added that there have been suggestions to follow January to December as financial year. "He urged states to take the initiative in this regard," it added.