GST on essential commodities ‘ill-thought-out and arbitrary’

[view original post]

Kejriwal also comments on his Singapore visa row: ‘I’m not some petty criminal’

Kejriwal also comments on his Singapore visa row: ‘I’m not some petty criminal’

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has demanded an immediate rollback of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on milk, rice, wheat and pulses, which came into effect from Monday.

“On one hand, the whole country is struggling with back-breaking inflation and on the other, the Central government has imposed GST on essential commodities making them more expensive. I demand the withdrawal of the GST imposed on food items,” the Delhi CM said. He described the move as “ill-thought-out and arbitrary”.

Speaking to the media after casting his vote in the Presidential election, Mr. Kejriwal said he was optimistic that the country would get “a strong and prudent President”.

The Delhi CM also spoke on the issue of clearance for his Singapore visit allegedly being stalled by the Centre.

‘Centre blocking visa’

“The government of Singapore has invited me to present the Delhi Model at the World Cities Summit. I am an elected Chief Minister, not some petty criminal. I fail to understand why the Centre is blocking my Singapore visit,” he said.

“Prominent leaders from all over the world will learn about the Delhi Model at the summit, which will increase the reputation of India in the international arena. When a common citizen is free to go out of the country, why can’t an elected Chief Minister,” he said.

Accusing the Centre of “dirty tactics”, Mr. Kejriwal said that there is “no law or court order which bars me from giving a presentation at an international forum. I have not committed any crime.”

‘Rise above politics’

“When it comes to bringing glory to the country, I feel that everybody should rise above party politics,” he also said.

Meanwhile, the Delhi Congress also attacked the BJP-led Centre for increasing the burden on the common people by charging 5% GST on essential items such as rice and milk products.

Delhi Congress chief Ch. Anil Kumar said, “All the policy decisions of the Modi government are intended to harass the poor and the middle classes in order to enrich BJP’s friends.” He added that people were already suffering from the effects of inflation and unemployment.