Kolkata, Feb 6 – Criticising the recent Union budget, and change in GST rates, BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, on February 6, expressed his disappointment and said that he was “completely dismayed by the approach of the GST council” led by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
"Can anybody tell what are the financial implications of all the changes that have been made in GST? You change the slabs in regards to various items. Where is the financial calculation for this loss or gain?”
The BJP leader said that the indirect taxing system - GST- has been made complicated and is a work in progress. Sinha said, “It is unfinished and incomplete. Various amendments are going on in respect to tax rate and procedure and filing.”
The former Union minister also pointed out that India’s rural economy is currently in distress with a 1.38% decline in farmer’s income since 2014.
At an event organized by the Calcutta Chamber of Commerce, he said, “There is tremendous rural distress and it is not merely because agricultural growth rate has declined. The distress is because the farmer is actually getting one third or 50% of the price of his produce when compared to the minimum support price.”
He compared the current Modi government’s performance to the previous UPA government’s performance, stating that this government has only recorded a 1.9% annual growth rate as compared to the 3.8% in the first four years of the UPA government’s reign.
Sinha said that the government’s vision of doubling the farmers’ income is a distant reality. "In the last four years, farmers' income has declined by 1.38%. Instead of increasing their income, it has gone down. So, when we are talking about doubling it by 2022, I would say the last four years have been lost. We are already in 2018, what shall be done in the next four years?", he said.
He took a dig at the Modi government, saying he expected the government to deal with non-performing assets in banks with the highest priority basis and that a large number of projects that were held up due to policy paralysis to be accelerated.