The government has notified the implementation of the central goods and services tax (C-GST) from July 1, making it clear that the rollout of the new indirect tax regime is on course, according to a report in financial daily Economic Times on Thursday.
"I don't see much of a problem. Small issues will always arise whenever you make a change of any kind. But I'm sure the system is fully geared up and the system will eventually smoothen itself out," ET quoted Finance Minister Arun Jaitley saying after a Cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
Jaitley was quoted in the report as saying that the rollout date for GST was decided by consensus by the GST Council, which comprises the Centre and the statese. "And more importantly, there is a constitutional mandate and that mandate is that on 16th of September, you will lose the right to collect existing taxes. So the alternate system has to come into place. Those who are talking in terms of deferring (GST) by six months and so on, that's a constitutionally impermissible thing," Jaitley said in the ET report.
Asked about Trinamool and some other Opposition parties planning to boycott the midnight launch function of GST, Jaitley said that states will now notify their respective GST Acts and other provisions, including the rollout date. "We have spent so much time in building consensus and fortunately, we were able to build consensus. Therefore that spirit of consensus should be maintained by all. Even the function we are organising symbolises that larger national consensus," ET quoted Jaitley as saying.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced on Facebook on Wednesday that her party will not attend the function "to celebrate GST, as a mark of protest".
Mayawati's Bahujan Samaj Party and Akhilesh Yadav's Samajwadi Party have also reportedly decided to stay away, though these parties may not call it a boycott.
The government will also unveil a new simplified procedure on Thursday for exporters to ensure a smooth transition to GST.
"The new procedures will be in line with the GST," a government official told ET. Customs has already started testing new forms on its systems. Central Board of Excise and Customs has also issued a set of guidance for importers and exporters to help them transition to GST changes in GST to give relief to small vendors, ET said in its report.