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GST first transparent, democratic process laid down in 60 yrs: J-K Fin. Minister

Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir): While announcing that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) will be implemented in Jammu and Kashmir with effect from Friday midnight, state Finance Minister Haseeb Ahmed Drabu said it is for the first time in 60 years that a transparent, democratic process was laid out for its implementation.

“The most important thing is that for the first time, in 60 years, we have laid out a process, a transparent, institutionalised, democratic process where in a constitutional amendment followed a resolution in the Assembly and was then laid on the table of the House,” Drabu said in a press conference here.

Expressing gratitude towards Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee, Drabu said they have come out with a Presidential order which actually is exactly in line of what was resolved by the Legislative Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Jammu and Kashmir will roll out the new GST regime from midnight tonight. We now become a part of the national GST regime. That is the outcome of Assembly Session that we have had and the last six-eight months of work that have happened,” he said.

Reacting sharply to the Opposition’s negation of the GST, and creating ‘frenzy’ in the state over the same, Drabu came out with some points to counter the same:

-In exercise of the power conferred by clause 1 of Article 370 of the Constitution – Not withstanding anything contained in this order, the powers of the state of Jammu and Kashmir as per Section 5 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir shall remain intact.

-Sub-clause 3 of Article 246(A) – The legislature of the state of Jammu and Kashmir shall have exclusive powers to make laws in respect of imposition of any taxes as enabled by Section 5 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir.

The state finance minister listed the above mentioned points stating that no new fresh articles have been extended, but only some amended articles have been extended.

Ahead of the implementation of the GST in the state, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti earlier today said that the day would be “written in golden letters.”

“After implementation of the GST, all eyes were set on Jammu and Kashmir Assembly. Our nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee maintained our dignity, we maintained theirs. What we are witnessing today is a day which will be written in golden letters,” Mufti said, while speaking at the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly. (ANI)