Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today expressed confidence and optimism on rolling out of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), even as she raised concern over ‘Smart City’ project, another flagship project of the BJP-led NDA government.
“We are fighting for GST as it will help industry with single point tax instead of multiple layers of taxation. Our Finance Minister Amit Mitra is leading the committee on GST and I think in the next one or two meetings it will be resolved,” Banerjee told a gathering of business and industry chambers at a felicitation programme here.
“I am politically opposed to BJP government but we support programmes which are pro-people and industry,” she said elaborating her government’s stand on GST.
The GST Bill — which creates a single national sales tax to replace several state and central levies — has already been approved by the Lok Sabha or Lower House of Parliament and is pending in the Upper House where the NDA government doesn’t have a majority.
On the Centre according ‘smart city’ status to Rajarhat, she said, “The theory (of Centre’s smart city) is wrong as we will have to give Rs 500 crore to get Rs 500 crore.”
“The project aims to make a building with all smart facilities. We can do a lot with that money for the benefit of the masses,” Banerjee said.
The state government has handed over a concept plan to develop Rajarhat New Town as a ‘smart green city’ to the Union Urban Development ministry. The plan has been prepared by the National Institute of Smart Governance (NISG).
“Rajarhat is an ‘oversmart’ city,” she commented. “We (Bengal government) already have six smart (theme) city projects. What is Bengal Credai (real estate body) doing?,” she said and asked the chambers of industry to iron out any issue with the state finance minister and begin the projects.