Gujarat Assembly ratifies GST Bill

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The Gujarat Assembly on Tuesday passed the Goods and Service Tax (GST) Constitution Amendment Bill, becoming the sixth state to pass the bill.

The ratification of the bill comes in quick succession after the Chhattisgarh assembly passed it unanimously on Monday.

Himachal, Assam, Jharkhand and Bihar state assemblies have also passed the Bill.

The state assembly of Gujarat had convened a special session to ratify the Bill that was passed by Parliament earlier this month.

In New Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party government only last week said it will place the GST Bill for ratification before the Delhi Assembly during its 4-day session beginning August 22 if it receives official communication about the Bill from the Centre.

The Constitution (122nd Amendment) Bill for the roll-out of the Goods and Sevices Tax (GST) was passed by the Lok Sabha earlier in August, with 443 members present in the House voting in favour of the legislation. Arun Jaitley had, earlier in August, announced that the deadline for the rollout of the bill was April 1, 2017.

The GST bill, seen as single biggest tax reform in a long time, needs to be ratified by at least 15 state legislatures before the President can notify the GST council which will decide the new tax rate and other issues.

The government had been working overtime to get states on board over the GST following the passage of the bill in Parliament. It is keen to bring two bills aimed at implementing the new tax regime in the winter session to meet the April 2017 deadline for its rollout.