New Delhi – On Wednesday Lok Sabha has passed two bills which would extend Central GST (CGST) and Integrated GST (IGST) in Jammu and Kashmir. Finance minister Arun Jaitley welcomed this decision saying this would show the path of bigger economic integration.

The special status which has been bestowed on J&K, has not been done to create any economic difference, said Jaitley. He says that GST has been implemented for the bigger benefits of the traders of Jammu and Kashmir. Voice vote has passed the bills, and the bills are implemented to take forward the formal amendments.

These amendments had been required for CGST and IGST and the removal of exemptions which had been planned out for J&K.

During a debate, Jaitley maintained that GST had been good news for J&K as the dream of implementing one tax could be realized through it. With the statement, he has declined the claim made by congress that with the implementation of these bills the government has tried to bestow a special status on J&K.

After making the statement, Jaitley said that a party of such esteem should not make any opinion which would encourage separatists. Additionally, he said that the special status for J&K is not for creating any economical differences.

In case J&K does not integrate with the taxation, the traders would lose input credit. This would lead to the higher tax rate on final products, said, Jaitley. J&K has always been a consumer state. He added GST is a destination which can be used to control product costs.

He has said that in case GST is not implemented in Jammu and Kashmir, the consumers would have to buy products like cars and other electronics goods from outside the state border. This would lead to financial loss to the traders and also to the consumers.

GST which has replaced many taxes in the country has been implemented on 1st of July across the nation except for J&K. Later on, the president extended the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

The assembly then issued an ordinance on 8th of July, and the new taxation came into effect in J&K. Shashi Tharoor has, however, hit the decision of extending GST to J&K. He said that Kashmir needs sensitive approach and the GST extension would have a serious impact. He also expressed his fear of future trouble due to the extension.

The officials of Congress and TMC both lashed out at the decision of GST extension in J&K. According to them, J&K needs full support and protection of the country. They also pointed out that the GST Council possesses the power to change rates even without a discussion with the Parliament.