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Politics Over Centre’s GST Compensation Heats Up In Odisha

Bhubaneswar: While the state is reeling under the COVID-19 wave, the mudslinging over Rs 5,122 crore Goods and Services Tax (GST) assistance to Odisha, has heated up the political corridor in the State.

Congress has termed the GST aid as State’s ‘right’, while the ruling BJD said, the central government has not done any favour by providing the compensation.

“As per the agreement, the Centre has to pay the GST dues to the State on time so I don’t understand why the State government is silent over the less compensation,” said Congress leader Panchanan Kanungo.

“The State is going through financial crunch amid the pandemic. At this crucial time, the Central government has not done any favour by providing Rs 5,122 crore GST assistance. They should release the remaining amount as soon as possible,” said BJD MLA Sashi Bhusan Behera.

Meanwhile, defending the charges, BJP said, the State has been receiving maximum assistance under various schemes since 2017.

Commenting on the development, BJP State General Secretary Prithviraj Harichandan said, “Since last two-three financial years, the GST assistance for the state is increasing. This shows the Central government’s contribution in Odisha’s development.”

Recently, the Central government has released the GST compensation of 5,122 crore to Odisha for 2019-20 financial year.

Odisha is witnessing a downward trend in revenue collection due to COVID-19 induced lockdowns and shutdowns. The GST collection in the first quarter of 2020-21 financial year slumped by 32.79 per cent.

The State collected Rs 1,560.2 crore in the first quarter of the fiscal as compared to Rs 2,321.39 crore during the corresponding period of 2019-20 fiscal.

Similarly In June, Rs 759.17 crore GST was collected as against Rs 804.49 crore in the previous year.

(Edited BY Suryakant Jena)

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