Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi has dubbed the implementation of GST as a “tamasha”, saying the reform was being rushed through in a “half-baked” manner. Currently abroad on a holiday, Mr. Gandhi, hit out at the government through twitter. He accused the government of being “insensitive” for rolling out GST without planning, foresight and institutional readiness, as it did during demonetisation.
Meanwhile, the opposition stood a divided house as NCP, JD(U), BSP, BJD, Samajwadi Party and Janata Dal(S) participated in the midnight launch of the GST, while the Congress, RJD, Trinamool Congress, Left, the DMK, National Conference boycotted the launch event.
Ruptures in the opposition unity emerged barely a week after 17 parties joined hands to put up a joint candidate against the ruling NDA nominee for the July 17 Presidential election.
The NCP, a key constituent of the Congress-led UPA, broke away from the Opposition ranks, with its chief Sharad Pawar along with Praful Patel and Tariq Anwar attending the event in the Central Hall of Parliament. Mr. Anwar said his party was attending the GST launch as it had supported the legislation on ushering in the new indirect tax regime in the country.
On behalf of JD(U), its Bihar unit chief and Rajya Sabha member Vashisht Narain Singh attended the event.
The BSP, which stood with opposition unity, was represented by two of their MPs. The Samajwadi Party, which had initially announced the boycott, did a somersault by attending the event, saying it found no problem when the party had supported the GST bill in Parliament.