GST debate: BJP backtracks on ‘national interest’, says, ‘JK’s special status can’t be harmed’

Srinagar: Strongly refuting the news item published in a section of press where some “fabricated quotes” have been attributed to him regarding GST implementation in the State, the Deputy Chief Minister, Dr Nirmal Singh on Saturday “clarified” that he has been “grossly misquoted and his remarks have been presented in a completely distorted manner”.

In a statement, Dr Singh said that the Government has already  constituted an All Party Committee to explore the ways and means for “implementing the new tax regime in the state without harming the interests of people and the special status” of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Why my remarks in such a distorted manner when several journalists were present at the said event,” he said and added, “it would have been reported by the other sections of the media the same way if I had made any such remarks.”

He said, “the Government would follow the proper process in implementation of GST regime so that the interests of the state, the consumers and the traders are protected appropriately.”

“The coalition Government is functioning smoothly and implementing developmental initiatives and other issues as per the Agenda of Alliance. There is no threat to the coalition government as such and it will complete its full term,” he said.

Elaborating further on the implementation of GST in the State, the Dy Chief Minister said, “this Central law is quite beneficial for all stakeholders in the State and does not harm any section of the society or Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir.”

“In the absence of this new tax regime which will be rolled out in the entire country from Ist July, the State and people will suffer hugely on account of double taxation,” he said.

He said, “those opposing implementation of GST in Jammu and Kashmir are misleading the common masses for their ulterior political interests. The GST will bring uniformity in the country with one tax and also benefit the common man in the State as many items of daily use will become cheaper,” he added.

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