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Sukhbir misleading industry on VAT refund: Punjab Congress
January, 18th 2014

To target deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal on his allegedly false promises to the industry on the value added tax (VAT) refund, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) on Friday came up with some more information received under the RTI Act. PPCC president Pratap Singh Bajwa informed that till date, Rs380.78 crore VAT refund is pending. This information under RTI was provided to one Jasdeepak Singh.

The information provided by the excise and taxation department of Punjab has revealed that till December 31, 2013, VAT refund of Rs380.78 crore were pending, after 90 days of raising the claim. Bajwa accused Badal of "misleading the industrial houses and investors on prevailing economic situation in Punjab, especially giving fast clearance of VAT refund."

He alleged that fake projections of facilities being given to industry in Punjab was one of the major reasons as to why no new investment was coming to the state, and that the existing industry and traders were fed up with the SAD-BJP government. Badal during the recently held Progressive Punjab Investment Summit had claimed that Punjab had started online refund of VAT claims and had also promised special incentives to the IT industry in refund of VAT.

Bajwa said that at the end of financial year 2006-2007, when SAD-BJP government came to power, the total pending VAT refund was Rs45.75 crore. "After that, the figure of fund refund started rising and by the end of 2009-2010 fiscal, the amount reached at Rs264.25 crore. It rose to Rs380.78 crore by December 2013. It is expected to go high by the end of current financial year," claimed the Punjab Congress chief.

Bajwa added, if that was the state of affairs in excise and taxation department, Badal can't blame the opposition parties for painting gloomy picture of Punjab. He said that fake projections, made by the deputy CM, were doing real damage to the state.

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