Modi keen to get through the GST bill but it is yet to decide and agree to the three amendments the Congress wants

Sonia Gandhi

The Congress looks all set to brazen out the National Herald issue by reviving recently debated corruption issues in BJP ruled states and launching fresh attacks on the ruling BJP in the week of the winter session beginning on Monday. Not only it is expected to re-seek parliament’s indulgence on issues of corruption including Lalit gate involving external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasudhara Raje Scindia and Vyapam scam of Madhya Pradesh Vyapam but also raise pitch on recent CAG findings on Rice scam in Chhattisgarh and counter PM Modi on the issue of cooperative federalism for keeping Kerala chief minister out from an inaugural event.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Congress on Sunday said that chief minister Oomen Chandy was kept out from a function to unveil the statue of Congress icon and former Kerala chief minister, R Sankar in Kollam by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. It described it a fresh attempt of BJP and RSS to misappropriate another Congress Icon of the yore after trying to usurp Sardar Vallabhai Patel and Lal Bahdur Shastri. “It was incidentally the chief minister who invited Prime Minister, Modi in the first instance, on the request of Vellapally Natesan general secretary, Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam to unveil the statue,” the Congress said in a statement. At loggerheads with the ruling BJP, Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s met senior party leaders informally at her house on late Sunday evening apparently to decide about the overall strategy to deal with raging issues in the parliament that includes National Herald and positioning on the GST bill among others. Seen highlighting different issues in the two houses of Parliament, the Congress also wants to bring its MPs in sync and raise similar issues simultaneously in both the houses. The meeting assumes significance, as the week of the winter session beginning on Monday is being seen as crucial to decide if issues would settle down between the two bickering parties to allow parliament to function normally where important legislative business is getting piled up with every lost day. PM Modi is keen to get through the GST bill but it is yet to decide and agree to the three amendments the Congress wants it to carry out which include doing away with a proposed additional 1% levy on the supply of goods to be levied over and above GST; capping of the GST rate at 18% and its inclusion in the constitutional amendment bill; and creation of an independent dispute resolution mechanism. To BJP’s irritation, it has also said that GST is not its only priority as other bills are important too. However, as no meeting could take place to break the logjam between the BJP and the Congress last week, the Congress is expected to keep the pot boiling by reviving issues that had lost the lustre during fast faced developments.

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National Herald issue: No breakthrough in sight on Parliament logjam