- Nirmala Sitharaman said Arun Jaitley's GST work was a huge contribution
- Arun Jaitley, her predecessor, died in August 24, 2019
- Nirmala Sitharaman presenting her second budget in parliament
Early in her presentation of the country's budget, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman referred to her predecessor, Arun Jaitley, and said his work on introducing the Goods and Services Tax was a huge contribution. Mr Jaitley died in August 24, 2019.
As she presented the budget, the Finance Minister said she would like to "pay homage to him" and then quoted him as saying, "It will be an India where the centre and states will work together for shared prosperity."
The Goods and Services Tax or GST, which replaced a lattice of taxes in different states with a uniform nationwide tax, has been criticised for its clumsy rollout and flawed implementation; some experts attribute a role to it in creating the current economic slowdown in the country.
Ms Sitharaman said of the GST:
- Simplified new return system is being introduced from April 1, 2020
- The GST was marked by "certain challenges - natural, since the transition was daunting."
- It has matured as a reform
- It has added 60 lakh new taxpayers
- Total of 40 crore returns were filed, 800 crore invoices were uploaded