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Opposing GST, 70,000 tax officials to start non-cooperation movement on Friday

Opposing some recent decisions taken by Goods and Service Tax (GST) Council, various indirect tax officials’ associations on Wednesday decided to start a non-cooperation movement.

To start with, the employees associations will not celebrate international customs day on Friday. Besides, they will observe ‘black day’ by wearing black badges on Martyrs’ Day, i.e. January 30, as per minutes of meeting held among their representatives in New Delhi. The associations said that their members are “highly disappointed” and feel “cheated” over the decisions taken by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley-led GST Council in its meeting on January 16. The Council had agreed to give states the powers to levy tax on economic activity within 12 nautical miles of territorial waters and to administer 90% of the tax payers under Rs 1.5 crore annual turnover.

“We feel that the biggest tax reform of the century should have been in conformity with the principles of responsibility and authority going together and also in conformity with the Constitutional design. We feel that the decision shall weaken the Centre’s ability to ensure its revenues. “The decision will not only adversely affect the career of revenue officers but it is not in national interest. We oppose the decisions taken by GST Council and requests for deferment and review of above inappropriate and incorrect decisions,” as per the minutes of meeting of steering committee of associations representing Group A, B and C employees of Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC).

The decision came after a meeting of representatives of Indian Revenue Service (Customs and Central Excise), All India Association of Central Excise Gazetted Executive Officers, All India Central Excise Inspectors’ Association and All India Central Excise and Service Tax Ministerial Officers Association, comprising 70,000 personnel, in New Delhi, office bearers said. According to them, the decision taken by GST Council in its January 16, meeting will not only weaken the Centre but also adversely affect the Indian economy and revenue collection but also national security.

They have decided to request authorities concerned to take immediate necessary action to resolve the issues and to defer the unjustified decision of GST Council taken under pressure of state VAT officers. “We feel that if the above genuine demands in national and revenue interest are not considered then this disciplined service will be forced to initiate non-cooperation movement following Gandhian methods of Satyagraha,” the associations said. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) is likely to be rolled out from July 1, as against April 1 decided earlier by the government.