Modi takes busi­ness class in Gu­jarat

Prime Min­is­ter tries to ap­pease the com­mu­nity with re­vised GST, says Di­wali has come early

Sunday Express - - FRONT PAGE -

PRIME Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi ap­peared to sound the bu­gle for the year-end Gu­jarat elec­tions on Sat­ur­day, say­ing Di­wali had come early this year be­cause of the changes an­nounced to the GST regime.

On a visit to Gu­jarat days before the polling sched­ule for his home state and Hi­machal Pradesh are an­nounced, Modi said: “Di­wali has come early for our cit­i­zens due to the de­ci­sions taken in the GST Coun­cil... You all must be busy pre­par­ing for Di­wali, and in Gu­jarat, Di­wali is cel­e­brated with great en­thu­si­asm, es­pe­cially among busi­ness­men.”

On Fri­day, the GST Coun­cil had eased tax com­pli­ance rules for small and medium busi­nesses and slashed tax rates on 27 prod­ucts, among other things.

Modi said “some very im­por­tant de­ci­sions” re­lated to GST had been taken. “We do not want the coun­try’s busi­ness class to get caught in red tape, files, bu­reau­cracy, I will never want this,” he said.

Ad­dress­ing a gath­er­ing in Dwarka af­ter lay­ing the foun­da­tion stone for a bridge be­tween Okha and Bet Dwarka, Modi said his gov­ern­ment stood for all-round de­vel­op­ment and panned the Op­po­si­tion for its “nar­row vi­sion” and re­sort­ing to cheap stunts to drum up sup­port. In con­trast, the BJP be­lieves in con­crete ac­tion to fa­cil­i­tate “all round and ex­ten­sive progress,” he said.

Congress spokesper­son Ran­deep Sur­je­w­ala hit back, say­ing an op­por­tu­nity to have an un­com­pli­cated tax regime was lost due to the “sheer in­com­pe­tence” of a “pan­ic­stricken gov­ern­ment... lost in the chaos of its own mak­ing”.

Shiv Sena chief Ud­dhav Thack­eray crit­i­cised the Modi gov­ern­ment for tak­ing away the com­mon man’s credit in forc­ing the cut in GST rates. “There is no Lak­shmi (cash) in peo­ple’s pocket now as Govt has taken it all. Peo­ple are wor­ried how to do Lak­shmi poo­jan dur­ing Di­wali? It’s good that govt re­duced the GST charges, but see the so­cial me­dia how peo­ple are mak­ing fun of this GST,” he said.

To­day, I have seen news­pa­pers from across the coun­try. They carry head­lines that Di­wali has come 15 days ear­lier. You all must be busy pre­par­ing for Di­wali, and in Gu­jarat, Di­wali is cel­e­brated with great en­thu­si­asm Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi

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