Marking an end to the long and tumultuous debate on GST, the Rajya Sabha today approved the crucial 122nd Constitutional amendment to turn the bill into law. The Lok Sabha had already passed the key bill.

After years of deliberation, the GST, touted as the biggest tax reform in Indian history since independence, has finally seen the light of day.

202 members of Parliament (MP) voted in favour of the Bill while 13 members voted against after a five-hour-long debate which saw voices from both the government and the Opposition speaking on the Bill and its various amendments.

AIADMK was the only party that expressed dissent with the Bill and called it unconstitutional. The MPs of the party staged a walkout during the voting process.

“Just as the income tax rate can’t be levied at the whim of the executive, and needs legislative approval, the same must also hold true for the goods and services tax rate (GST),” former Finance Minister P Chidambaram said during the debate.

“Today we may not put the rate in the Constitutional amendment bill but we will have to put it in the central bill,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in his opening statement.

“Because of GST Bill, there is a permanent loss to state of Tamil Nadu and it will violates the basic structure of the constitution,” A Navaneetha Krishnan of AIADMK said.

“Proud moment for all of India, compliment Parliament and the government of India,” Uday Kotak, executive vice chairman and managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank told ETNow.

Courtesy: Economic Times
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