Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley requesting to exempt the works that are covered under beedi industry, granite industry, irrigation and drinking water works from Goods and Service Tax (GST).
The Chief Minister expressed his concerns in the letter, mentioning that thousands of workers earn their livelihood by working in beedi industry and as such imposing excess taxes on the industry will adversely affect the interest of beedi workers.
He also said that there are about 2,000 granite processing units and in these units about two lakh people are provided direct employment as well as about five lakh people get indirect employment.
Pointing out that GST Council has proposed 12 percent GST on Granite and Marble raw blocks and 28 percent GST on finished products, Rao said that such high rates of GST will have a detrimental effect on demand and growth of Granite and Marble Industry, negative impact on trade and reducing the employment potentially leading to closing down of most of the units in the state.
The Chief Minister, referring to the irrigation and drinking water works, mentioned in the letter that the Telangana government has taken up a number of massive infrastructure programmes including the prestigious Mission Bhagiratha, Drinking water projects and Irrigation projects with huge investments.
He said that the proposed rates of GST on these will increase the cost of the projects substantially. Considering that the Irrigation and Drinking water projects are for larger public welfare, it would be appropriate to bring them under exempted category or at least put them in the lower GST slab of 5 percent.
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