GUWAHATI: Assam became the first State in the country to ratify the Constitution Amendment Bill on Goods and Services Tax (GST) with the State Assembly passing the Bill unanimously on Friday.
The Bill was approved by the Cabinet before it was placed in the Assembly, official sources said.
“A historic resolution was passed in Assam Assembly as Assam became the first State to ratify the Constitutional Amendment Bill relating to GST,” Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal tweeted.
“I am sure Assam will benefit from the GST through higher economic growth and better revenue collection,” he added.
In a telephonic conversation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Sonowal for GST ratification by Assam Legislative Assembly.
Minister for Finance Himanta Biswa Sarma said Sonowal had wanted Assam to become the first State to pass the amendment as this would send a positive signal to the industry.
“This is a historic occasion for us to become the first State to pass this Bill. I would like to thank the Speaker for allowing us to introduce it today (Friday) after we informed him on Thursday night,” Sarma said.
Of the Central GST portion, 42 per cent tax will be given back to the State. The GST will also have a special concession option for Northeast and the Himalayan States if they request reduction of taxes for any reason. Besides, these States can collect special tax during any natural calamity or disaster subject to approval by GST Council.
The Constitution (122nd Amendment) Bill for the rollout of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) was passed by the Lok Sabha on Monday, with 443 members voting in favour of the legislation. The deadline for the rollout of the Bill was April 1, 2017.