Ruckus in Delhi Assembly; Sisodia accuses BJP MLAs of blocking discussion over VAT Amendment Bill

Ruckus in Delhi Assembly over VAT Amendment Bill

New Delhi, June 30: Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Tuesday accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLAs of obstructing the discussion over the VAT (Amendment) Bill in the Assembly, saying they tore the Bill and left before the discussion could take place.

The Deputy Chief Minister said: “Now if they don’t understand VAT (Amendment) Bill what can we do? Before we could discuss it they tore the Bill and left. There was a discussion after that. I spoke and Somnath spoke. When the proposal for discussion came, they opposed it.”

The Delhi Assembly passed the Value Added Tax (Amendment) Bill today.

The Bill was passed even as the Assembly witnessed high drama after BJP MLA Vijender Gupta tore off the amendment papers and his party MLAs staged a walkout from the session.

BJP MLA Vijender Gupta, who tore off the VAT amendment papers in the Delhi Assembly, said he was forced to protest due to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government’s anti-people policies.

Gupta reportedly said: “We were not allowed an opportunity to speak. When we asked them to stop, they started voting. Since this was a decision against the public and a betrayal to the people, we were compelled. They are trying to increase prices of petrol, petrol products and soft drinks, this will increase inflation in Delhi.”

Gupta further added: “We wanted a healthy discussion but they were making anti-people decisions. That is why we had to protest.”

BJP leader Satish Upadhyay said: “This is completely wrong and we will oppose this bill. Inflation will increase in any way. So this is not done.”

Former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit also took potshots at the AAP government for misleading the people of Delhi by going back on its word and considerably increasing the VAT.

Dikshit said: “They can do it because they have such a huge majority, but is it the correct thing to do? Some months ago Mr. Kejriwal had said they won’t be able to fulfill all promises, but probably 30-40 percent. So if they are going to say that and then considerably increase the VAT, then I think it is having mislead the people and getting back on their words.”

The bill will make enabling provisions for levy of VAT in respect of goods enlisted in the Fourth Schedule at flexible rates instead of a flat slab of 20 percent.

(With Agency Inputs)

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