Centre reaches out to Congress over GST Bill

| Updated: Jul 14, 2016 19:56 IST

New Delhi, July 14 (ANI): In a move indicating a thaw in the impasse over the much awaited Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill, the Centre on Thursday reached out to the Congress to discuss the Bill. Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu spoke to Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Anand Sharma regarding the landmark Bill. Both the leaders assured Venkaiah that they will get back to him soon after consultations within their party. Earlier, Naidu had said that the government is in the favour of passing the GST Bill during the Monsoon Session of Parliament, which commences from July 18 and will go on till August 12. "A lot of bills are pending in both the houses of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha, and some are in Standing Committee. We will speak to all parties regarding the bills, even if it requires personal talks. If GST is passed, Indian economy will grow further. We have wide support, but we will like every party to be part of consensus," Naidu said. The proposed tax reform, India's biggest revenue shake-up since independence in 1947, seeks to replace a slew of federal and state levies, transforming the nation into a Customs Union. The Congress Party, the original author of the tax reform, has said that it would back the GST if the government agreed to cap the tax rate at 18 percent and create an independent mechanism to resolve disputes on revenue sharing between states. Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government now is in lieu of hopes to have the Bill passed in the Rajya Sabha in the Monsoon Session of Parliament. (ANI)