Free Press Journal

Maharashtra: 3-day House session is scheduled to ratify state GST


Mumbai: A three-day special session of the Vidhan Sabha has been scheduled from May 20 at the Vidhan Bhavan here to ratify the State Goods and Services Tax (SGST) Bill-2017 and discuss other legislations for local bodies.

Earlier, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had given a condition that the Bill should ensure that the financial autonomy of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation is not compromised.

The Bill has a provision to credit the amount of provisional compensation to the bank account designated by the BMC on or before the fifth of every month.

According to an official of Vidhan Bhavan, the Assembly (Lower House) will assemble in the morning at 11 am while the Council (Upper House) will assemble at 2 pm.

“A total three legislations will be introduced by finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar. Out of the three, the first will be to ratify SGST while the second will be on compensation for BMC and compensation to municipal corporations and municipal councils other than BMC. The third will be on repeal of a few existing financial Acts,” the official said.

The SGST legislation has proposed that the financial year 2016-17 shall be taken as the base year for the purpose of calculating compensation amount payable to BMC and other local bodies.

The Bill also proposes to provide a mechanism of providing bank guarantee. If the state fails to credit the compensation on or before fifth date, the bank will be authorised to credit the account of BMC by an amount of compensation payable for that month against the guarantee to be issued by the state government.

Thackeray had aired concerns of the financial autonomy for BMC, which he had said was assured to him after a meeting with finance minister Mungantiwar.

One senior Congress legislator on the condition of anonymity said except for former chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and Jayant Patil of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), nobody else will speak on the financial reform Bill. “Who will speak over SGST? Who has the knowledge of this Bill? I do not think the session will go on for three days. It may conclude on Saturday itself,” the legislator added.