A week ahead of the completion of one year of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rollout, Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the taxation scheme as a “celebration of honesty.”
Addressing the nation in the 45th edition of his ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio programme, Prime Minister Modi said the introduction of the GST has eliminated the concept of “Inspector Raj” mindset in tax payment.
“A number of complaints were lodged in the past years regarding irregularities in taxation. However, with the GST in place, there is no scope for the same, as everything is technologically processed,” he added.
Another advantage, Prime Minister Modi highlighted, is the elimination of check posts, which has facilitated faster movement of goods.
“With check posts being removed, the movement of goods has become faster, and there has been a large improvement in the logistics sector as well,” he noted.
The Prime Minister also lauded the state governments for collectively helping implement the GST in the interest of the nation, thereby making it a “prime example of cooperative federalism.”
“‘One Nation, One Tax’ which was once a dream of the people, is now a reality. The credit for One Nation One Tax reform goes to the states,” he opined.
The Prime Minister further said, it is generally believed that such a big tax reform, in a huge country like India takes five to seven years for effective adoption.
He expressed happiness that despite this, due to the enthusiasm of honest people, the new tax system has managed to create a space for itself within a year.
The GST was rolled out in July last year, after months of deliberation.
Launched on the midnight on June 30 by Prime Minister Modi and the then President Pranab Mukherjee, the taxation scheme aimed at bringing all taxes into a single window along the lines of the ‘One Nation – One Tax – One Market’ goal.
However, the GST has been criticised time and again by the Opposition for its negative impact on small traders and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).