Maharashtra Congress president Ashok Chavan is a Lok Sabha MP and former Chief Minister
Maharashtra Congress president and lawmaker Ashok Chavan today criticised Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray for red-flagging certain provisions of the draft State Goods and Services Tax (SGST) bill despite the Shiv Sena earlier welcoming the passage of the GST bill in Lok Sabha.
The bill will be introduced for passage in the state legislature at a special session beginning May 20.
"I was present in Lok Sabha when the Central GST bill was passed. Shiv Sena members had welcomed the passage of the GST bill in Lok Sabha by thumping the desks. What doubts do they have now?" Mr Chavan asked.
Criticising state Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar's visit to Mr Thackeray's residence yesterday for clearing his doubts about the bill, Mr Chavan said, "Is it right for the state government to make a presentation of the bill at the residence of a party president? By doing this, the government is creating an extra constitutional authority".
Mr Thackeray recently raised concern over quantum of compensation to the Sena-ruled Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on account of abolition of octroi after the GST comes into effect from July 1 this year.
"It looks like Uddhav Thackeray thinks that his ministers in the state government are not capable of understanding the provisions of the bill," Mr Chavan said, adding that the government should have held consultations with all party leaders in the legislature instead of making a presentation to Mr Thackeray.
Mr Mungantiwar had said that the government by the proposed SGST law will guarantee that civic bodies like the BMC shall get monthly assured funds with interest in case there is any delay in release of funds by the Centre.
"This year the BMCs estimated revenue income by way of octroi was pegged at Rs 7,200 crore. Considering the average natural rise in revenue income over the last decade, the state has assured the BMC of compensating it at the rate of 8 per cent which is double the revenue income of the BMC by way of octroi," he said.