The Congress said it had issues with the Centre over the lack of uniformity in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rate and exclusion of certain commodities in the proposed GST tax regime.
A day after Rahul Gandhi said he did not want a GST rate of more than 18 per cent as it would burden the poor, the party said if the new rates were not within reasonable limits, the party would oppose it in the winter session of Parliament, starting November 16.
"There is no uniformity in the proposals. GST was supposed to have covered majority of items and create multiple tax rates," Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi told Business Standard. "We also want to see which items have been put in the exclusion list as the definition of luxury is vague," he said, noting that tobacco, alcohol and petroleum have been kept out of the GST.
The GST rates would be discussed at the council's meet on November 3 and 4.
Sources said though the party had been pushing for an 18 per cent cap on the GST rate, it might show flexibility of one or two per cent keeping in mind the final tax proposal of the government. "We don't yet know the degree of consensus in the GST council," said Singhvi.
Congress leaders said the party played a role in getting the constitutional amendment bill on GST passed in the monsoon session and would also have to be consulted as the centre wants to pass two more enabling legislations passed in the winter session.
This would be needed to roll out the GST rate from April 1 2017 as targeted by finance minister Arun Jaitley.
"If the GST rate are reduced efficacy of levy by increasing on exclusion or by increasing diversity of rates, the same may find opposition in parliament where the act will come for passage," said Singhvi.