Property tax, VAT discussed in SAD-BJP coordination comm meet
August, 29th 2014
Issue of property tax and Value Added Tax (VAT), which has been the bone of contention between alliance partners SAD and BJP in Punjab, were discussed threadbare at the first state coordination committee meeting of two political parties today.
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had recently formed the committee of SAD and BJP members to streamline day-to-day functioning and cooperation between the alliance partners.
The Committee took note of problems being faced by people including trading community with regard to property tax and VAT and sought to simplify and rationalise the taxation structure in such a way that people are not burdened with "heavy doses of taxes" and at the same time, state government's revenue mobilisation was not adversely affected.
"We mainly discussed property tax and VAT issues in the first meeting held here," senior SAD leader and coordination committee member Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa said here today.
The committee sought to take views of departments concerned first in its next meeting scheduled for September 2 as part of its efforts to take remedial measures required to simplify and rationalise property tax and VAT.
"The committee has decided to take opinions of the departments concerned (local government and excise and taxation) to know why there is so much hue and cry over property tax and VAT," said senior BJP leader and member of the committee, Narottam Dev Ratti.
Ratti said the feedback of all stakeholders including industry associations, unions and public associations would also be taken in to streamline the taxation process.
"We want that people should not be overburdened with taxes and at the same time, the state government's revenue collection is not affected for development purposes," said Ratti.
SAD-BJP alliance has been facing widespread criticism over property tax, complicated VAT structure and spiralling prices of sand and gravel.
Fissures had appeared last month between SAD and BJP alliance when BJP MLA and Cabinet Minister Anil Joshi had demanded rollback of advance tax on stock while SAD advised him not "play politics" on this issue.
From Akali side, party's secretary general Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, and general secretary Balwinder Singh Bhunder, both Rajya Sabha MPs, and from BJP side Pathankot MLA Ashwani Sharma, senior BJP leaders Narottam Dev Ratti and Rajinder Bhandari were present in the meeting.