The government hopes to pass the landmark Constitution Amendment Bill for a national Goods and Services Tax (GST) as well as the bankruptcy and insolvency bill in the second half of the Budget session beginning April 20, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today.
The GST bill has already been passed by the Lok Sabha and is pending ratification by the Upper House, where the ruling NDA does not have a majority. After it is approved by the Rajya Sabha, the legislation needs to be ratified by half of the 29 states so as to roll out GST possibly by October 1.
“The current session of Parliament has already seen one landmark legislation two days ago. And I do hope to see another two being passed in the second part of the session with regard to the bankruptcy and insolvency laws and GST,” he said at the Advancing Asia Conference here.
The Parliament had last week passed the Aadhaar Bill, providing statutory backing to the unique identification number for transferring government subsidies and benefits. Also, the Real Estate Bill was approved by the Rajya Sabha.
Once the GST and the bankruptcy and insolvency laws are approved, “I think this gives major fillip or push to our reform process” even in an otherwise weak global scenario, Jaitley said.
Exhibiting determination to move on the reform path, India can provide a significant amount of growth to the world, he said.
“We are trying to have special emphasis now both in terms of legislative changes and resources being put to strengthen the banking system. I do feel that next few months, in bringing about structural change, are going to be extremely important,” the minister said.
Stating that India has its own share of problems, Jaitley said there was increased determination in the country to face the challenges and accelerate the pace of reforms so as to continue to grow.
“Our growth model is based on concerns to eradicate poverty,” he said.