GoodBye VAT, Hello GST: Prez Pranab Mukherjee calls GST a disruptive change

From VAT to GST, India’s journey has been exceptional. The implementation of GST is a landmark victory for the whole country, however, the opposition averted from attending the GST launch ceremony. If we could not stand united as a country, are we questioning our own nationality? That’s for the opposition to decide. Despite their absence, the ceremony was a grand affair.

The GST ceremony was attended by the President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, finance minister Arun Jaitley and other Cabinet ministers, many chief ministers, and senior government officials. It was held at the historic Central Hall of Parliament. The GST has replaced more than a dozen central and state taxes or Value Added Tax (VAT) with an aim to create a seamless unified market for the $2 trillion Indian

GST = Summation of over dozen taxes

GST is a seamlessly unified tax regime which will streamline the Indian taxation system. GST has subsumed a dozen of different indirect taxes like VAT, excise, etc.

The event was given life when the President, Prime Minister, Finance Minister entered the Central Hall of the Parliament. They addressed the gathering as the three prominent ministers delivered their speeches. President Pranab Mukherjee said the ambitious GST is a “tribute” to the maturity and wisdom of India’s democracy.

President Pranab Mukherjee said the ambitious central tax is a tribute to the maturity and wisdom of India’s democracy. “The beginning of a new era in taxation is about to initiate in a few minutes. GST is a result of a broad consensus which was arrived at between the Centre and states,” Mukherjee said prior to GST rollout.

GST is a disruptive change

‘This consensus has taken not only time but also massive efforts. President Mukherjee termed the GST a disruptive change. “It is also a moment of some satisfaction for me because, as the Finance Minister, I had introduced the Constitution Amendment Bill on 22 March 2011,” he added.

“Success of such major changes always depends on their effective implementation. In the months to come, based on the experience of actual implementation, the GST Council and the Central and state governments should continuously review the design and make improvements, in the same constructive spirit as has been displayed till now,” he said.

Similar teething problems faced during VAT

“It is similar to the introduction of VAT when there was initial resistance. When a change of this magnitude is undertaken, however positive it may be, there are bound to be some teething troubles and difficulties in the initial stages,” he said.

While he was speaking, the clock ticked 12 am and the GST was officially rolled out. After Prez speech, President and Narendra Modi pressed the button to officially announce GST rolling.



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