National Conference leader, Devender Singh Rana on Tuesday questioned the PDP-BJP dispensation for convening special session of the Legislative Assembly on GST when it has already decided to introduce it in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Even before deliberations in the legislature over the contentious issue of the GST in its yet another special session between July 4 and July 8, the Finance Minister Dr Haseeb Drabu has gone public stating that a recommendation is likely to be made to the President of India on 6th July”, Rana said in a statement issued here this afternoon.
He described the statement of the Finance Minister as an insult to the institution of Legislative Assembly, saying the present dispensation has no regard for democratic traditions and values. “If the government has decided to go ahead in introducing the GST, why does it indulge in gimmickries like convening special sessions of the legislature”, he said, wishing that the state government had waited for the outcome of the legislative proceedings.
Rana accused the PDP-BJP dispensation of hoodwinking public opinion by staging a façade of discussing the issue in the Assembly or in public fora notwithstanding a decision having been arrived to implement it.
He asked the insensitive government to desist from enacting dramas, saying the people are sagacious enough to read between the lines. He also expressed concern over the deliberate acts of the coalition government in heightening tension over the issue and bringing the two regions Jammu and Kashmir in a face-off like situation.
“This type of politics is deplorable”, he maintained and said the canards being spread by the government san logic and public interest, as it has totally failed in rolling out a road-map on introducing the GST by safeguarding constitutional, economic and administrative interests of Jammu and Kashmir.
Rana said that the PDP-BJP dispensation is conscious of its handicap of not having worked out safeguards so far and therefore it is seeking the cover of evolving the so-called consensus. He said National Conference is not averse to the introduction of the GST but not in the present format, keeping in view the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Constitution of India. He reiterated that the new tax regime in the present form will not safeguard the interests of trade, industry and the consumers in J&K.
Rana said that National Conference will continue to seek safeguards with regard to constitutional, administrative and economic aspects before implementing the GST, cautioning that failure in doing so will have serious ramifications for which the coalition government will be squarely responsible.
He added that the coalition government was clueless how to proceed ahead with the new tax regime but political expediencies are over-riding the overall interests of the state. He asked as to how the government will protect the state’s own right of legislating taxes, saying the move exposes the claims of the PDP-BJP duo to protect and safeguard the constitutional and economic status of the state. “We wonder how this insensitive government will guard against impinging upon the residuary powers vested with the state”, he observed.