Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the government wants to ensure that entrepreneurs and industries carry out their business without a worry. She said the government was observing the impact of the slew of measures announced to prop up the economy before taking further steps. However, Sitharaman remained non-committal on lowering GST rates.
The Minister was in Pune to hold discussions with trade associations, industry players and tax officials. Speaking to reporters, she said, “We want entrepreneurs to carry out their business without a worry. Similarly, we have expressed out keenness to serve farmers so that everyone carries on with their business which create job and wealth for the country. Therefore, it was important that tax administrators facilitate them. It is important that tax administrators do their job of tax collection and enforcement of tax rules, but necessarily understanding business and facilitating them”.
She said the industry is focusing on GST reforms and simplification of forms in GST. “I am willing to hear any number of people on GST rates. It is not in my hands. It has to go to the GST council and it will be discussed there in the law committee. The decision is made there,” the Minister said.
She said, “I have announced some measures for the automobile sector. I will have to get inputs from the sector to see what kind of impact the announcement I have made has had.”
Slams criticism of RBI
Commenting on the Opposition’s criticism on the RBI’s decision to transfer ₹1.76 lakh crore of the surplus reserve to the government, Sitharaman said, “The Jalan committee had experts appointed by the RBI and not by the government. They had sittings and have come out with a formula. Any suggestion about the credibility of the Reserve Bank, therefore, for me seems a bit outlandish.”
On Rahul Gandhi’s barb, the Minister said, “ Rahul continues with his chor narrative, even as people have given him a befitting reply. The Congress Party must speak to their former Finance Ministers and then talk about the RBI”.
Rahul Gandhi had earlier said the government was “stealing money” from the RBI.
Source- Business Line.