The Jammu and Kashmir assembly witnessed ruckus over the passage of Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill on Tuesday with Opposition parties accusing the PDP-BJP government of fiddling with State's special status, which is enshrined in the Article 370 of the Constitution.
It was also adopted in upper house of the State legislature by a voice vote.
However, with the resolution passed, GST can now be implemented in Jammu & Kashmir. Traders in Srinagar also staged a march against the proposed implementation of GST, which they claimed would lead to erosion of the special status and the fiscal autonomy of Jammu and Kashmir.
The resolution was moved by Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu yesterday.
Seeking support of the Legislature, Mr.Drabu said the issues of constitutionalism should be debated by lawmakers.
As the state draws its taxation powers from its own Constitution, opposition says the extending of Constitutional Amendment 101, or the GST Act, to the state would take away these powers. "It will open a Pandora's Box that will have implications on J&K's special constitutional position". "Besides, the exclusive powers of the State to tax and the Consolidated Fund of J&K shall not be impaired", he said. "The sense of the House is that no one has issues with GST per se".
The opposition MLAs alleged that the ruling PDP under pressure from its BJP ally has chose to bulldoze through the GST implementation in the state.
Drabu said the new system will take some time and there will be issues on the implementation level despite the fact that nearly ninety percent of the trade is beyond the purview of the GST because of modest turnover.
"Junaid Azim Mattu, the National Conference spokesperson, responding to the Madhav's tweet wrote ".@jkpdp has helped BJP erase the remaining constitutional distinction that set J&K apart.
He said Article 370, which gives special status to the State, should be "used for development and empowerment". The government missed the June 30 deadline to pass the GST in the state assembly.
He said New Delhi has never fulfilled the promises made to people of State and this (GST) case will meet the same fate.
The J&K Assembly has finally passed the resolution for implementing GST.
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