Telangana government to press for lower GST on beedi, granite

Deccan Chronicle.

Nation, Current Affairs

Mr Rama Rao would raise all these issues again in the GST Council meeting being held on Sunday.

Municipal Administration and IT Minister K.T. Rama Rao

Hyderabad: The state government will pitch for reduction in GST tax rates on granite and beedi industries in the next round of GST Council meeting to be held in New Delhi on Sunday.

IT minister K.T. Rama Rao will attend the meeting on behalf of finance minister Etala Rajender whose son is getting married the same day.

Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao had recently written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union finance minister Arun Jaitley, seeking tax reductions on granite and beedi industries and exemption for Mission Bhagiratha and irrigation project works.

The CM brought to the notice of Centre that there are nearly 2,000 granite industries in state that provide direct employment to 2 lakh and indirect employment to 5 lakh people. He expressed concern that granite industries will face the risk of closure due to higher tax rates, affecting the livelihood of lakhs of people.

The CM requested the Centre to bring granite and finished products under the 12 per cent GST slab, instead of the proposed 12 per cent slab on raw granite and 28 per cent tax on finished products.

The CM also cited massive infrastructure programmes like the Mission Bhagiratha drinking water project and other irrigation works taken up by the state government with huge investments that will be affected by the proposed GST rates, as costs are likely to increase substantially.

Considering that the irrigation and drinking water projects are for public welfare, the CM said that it would be appropriate to exempt or at least put these infrastructure projects in the lower GST slab of 5 per cent. Mr Rama Rao would raise all these issues again in the GST Council meeting being held on Sunday.