District Congress Committee Jammu (Urban) Stages Massive Protest Against BJP for Hike in GST Rates

“Highest GST in the World Imposed by BJP Government”: Bhalla

On Monday, the District Congress Committee Jammu (Urban) held a meeting at the Congress office at Shaheedi Chowk to discuss important matters. After the meeting concluded, the Congress leaders staged a massive protest against the BJP government for the hike in GST rates of various essential commodities, which came into effect on Monday after the meeting of the GST Council, which union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman chaired.

The Protest was led by Former Minister & Working President PCC Raman Bhalla and Former Minister Yogesh Sawhney, General Secretary PCC InCharge District President Jammu (U). Slamming the BJP for increasing the GST rates, the Congress leaders raised slogans against the Center and demanded the rollback of the hike.

Along with Shri Raman Bhalla, Yogesh Sawhney, senior Congress leaders Kanta Bhan, Th. Manmohan Singh, Ved Mahajan, Dr Ramakant Khajuria, Uttam Singh Chib, Varinder Singh Manhas, Thomas Khokhar, Dwarka Choudhary, Rashpal Bhardwaj, Ritu Choudhary, Satish Sharma, Pawan Dev Singh, Chander Sheikhar Sharma, Sanjeev Panda, Atul Sharam, Jatin Vashisht, Ashok Khajuria, Vijay Chib, Mandeep Singh, Nageshwar, Rakesh Sharma, Aman Bawa, Darshan Verma, Arif Malik, Hoshiar Singh, Dewan Chand, Sayed Khan, Janak Raj, Pradeep Bhalla, Arti Gupta, Sdr. H.S. Baggi, Rishu Kumar, Janak Mehra, Kartar Singh, Raj Kumar Mehra, Vijay Singh, Balbir Singh and others were at the Protest.

Speaking at the Protest, Working President PCC Raman Bhalla criticised the decision to increase GST rates, saying that this will badly impact Indian families for whom various household items will be costlier. With the hike coming into effect, the ordinary person will have to pay extra to buy everyday items, increasing their kitchen budget. The government has now imposed 5% GST on daily use kitchen items such as curd, lassi, buttermilk, paneer, rice, wheat, oats etc.

Calling GST the Gabbar Singh Tax, Bhalla further stated that the BJP government had been consistently making efforts to increase taxes and increase government revenue at the cost of the pockets of the middle class and low-income families. It is a shameful and unnecessary decision that the BJP must roll back immediately.

At a time when the country is battling so many economic difficulties, the Centre goes ahead and adds another problem to the list. From the hike, it is obvious which section of people the BJP cares about and how ignorant and indifferent it is to the real needs of ordinary people.

Bhalla further highlighted that the brunt of this hike would be borne by the middle-class families, the poor, and the working class, who already struggle to make ends meet because of the current inflation in our country.

Who does the government care about more, it’s business class capitalist friends or the commoner, asked Bhalla. The GST-induced inflation and the Modi government-induced inflation are crippling people’s savings and budgets; when will the Modi government stop.

These are the “Ache Din” the Modi government had promised they would bring. Only recently, under the BJP government, retail inflation had hit an 8-year high of 7.8% in April, and wholesale inflation had surged to a 9-year high of 15.08% on the back of high food and energy prices in the same month. Everything from fuel to food is costlier now; where is the commoner? Said Bhalla.

“Another huge blunder that comes in the form of GST rates hike”: Sawhney

Former Minister Yogesh Sawhney General Secretary PCC InCharge District President Jammu (U), also speaking at the Protest, lashed out at the BJP for “another huge blunder that comes in the form of GST rates hike”. He stated that it is such an unnecessary move to hike GST on things like curd, paneer, rice and other essential commodities, and its sole objective is to exploit the country further.

The BJP government has imposed the highest GST rates worldwide, whereas Congress had set an 18% cap. The entire GST system is a hassle for the majority in the country. Due to the wrong policies of the BJP government, the people are suffering. The price of various essential and daily use items has gone up drastically.

The increase in inflation is hitting the people hard, and the Centre has left no space for the commoner to breathe. The BJP government immediately withdrew GST exemptions on items such as pre-packed wheat flour, curd and buttermilk. At the same time, further deliberations were ordered to decide the tax rate for casinos but not for things consumed by lower and middle-income groups.

Sawhney further added that This indicates that the government is not bothered by the problems of the middle and low-income families; on the other hand, they are genuinely concerned about the needs of the rich.

It is high time now that the BJP stops exploiting our people, cuts back on the GST rates and provides relief to the citizens instead of adding to their misery. The Congress party is strictly against this Gabbar Singh Tax of the Modi government, and we demand a cut back in tax rates, stated Sawhney.

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