Friday, 12 January 2018 | PNS | Dehradun-
Former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Harish Rawat on Thursday said that a large section of the middle class, from which Haldwani transporter Prakash Pandey came, is facing the challenges which made Pandey desperate enough to commit suicide.
He opined that those in Government and in Opposition need to consider the negative effects of demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax (GST). Apart from this, the State Government should also conduct a study by officials and experts on the impact of these two factors especially on small businesses in the State.
Addressing a Press conference at the Congress Bhawan here on Thursday, Rawat said that the circumstances under which Pandey had committed suicide were unfortunate and deplorable. He said, “In his video clip, Pandey has blamed demonetisation and GST for business loss. I fear that the factors which pushed him to suicide are also being faced by a considerable proportion of the public. The middle class to which Pandey belonged is still most vulnerable in Uttarakhand. The state should conduct a study to ascertain the impact of GST and demonetisation especially on small businesses in Uttarakhand.”
Rawat further alleged that 10 months after formation of the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Uttarakhand, developmental works had come to a standstill in the state. “The State Government accuses the previous government of emptying the state’s coffers but this does not explain the downward trend in revenue generation. Where Value Added Tax was replaced by GST, the receipts have dropped by about 50 per cent. There has also been a drop of about 40 per cent in mining but for this I cannot be blamed for having taken away the sand as the resources are still there despite which revenue has dropped. When it comes to liquor, the areas which were major revenue earners for the state are now witnessing a drop in revenue because spurious liquor from Chandigarh is now being sold in such areas.” Rawat also opined that the state government has no road-map for good governance. Referring to the division of assets with Uttar Pradesh, he said that though the state government was making it appear as if all issues pertaining to the state transport corporation had been resolved the situation is unclear. He said that even if Uttar Pradesh retained 86 per cent and Uttarakhand got 14 per cent share of the roadways properties at places including Lucknow and at Ajmeri Gate in Delhi, the state would get Rs 700 crore but this has not happened yet.
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