Unlike the last midnight event held in 1997 on the occasion of golden jubilee of the Independence at a special session of Parliament, it will be a gala event at the circular -shaped hall that has been loaned for the launch of the historic reform. The second reason Azad gave was the BJPs silence over all the raging issues in the country like farmer suicides, mob lynching and others.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has given businesses two months leeway to file late returns during the switch to GST.A massive media campaign has been launched by the government to create awareness, with telephone help lines opened to address public concerns. Prior to this the midnight session has taken place only twice- 50th year of Independence and 50th anniversary of the Quit India Movement. Calling it "another epic blunder of the Centre" TC supremo Mamata Banerjee said in a statement on Wednesday that repeated suggestions to take some more time to properly implement GST had fallen on deaf ears.
The previous Congress-led UPA regime had failed to implement the GST because of opposition from the BJP.
Sources said the Congress was clearly irritated with Mr. Modi attempting to emulate the nation's initially Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru's midnight "tryst with destiny" speech on the eve of Independence.
Congress also objects to the fact that PM Modi and not President Pranab Mukherjee will launch GST. Former Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said that till now GST was Goods & Services Tax but after tomorrow's event it will be famous as "Grand Self-Promoting Tamasha". "I hope Congress also realises and then revises its decision", the minister said.
A gong will be sounded at midnight to introduce the GST. And after 2008 till 2014 the only Chief Minister opposing this was Mr. Modi. But since Singh's party Congress has already stated that they will not be part of this midnight session, there is no scope of him being there with PM Modi. "This is not done and acceptable", said Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala. Around 600 people including ministers and GST officials are expected at the event. Both Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar or senior leader Sharad Yadav will not attend the event.
One of the things that is keeping companies occupied ahead of the launch is calculation of input tax credit, which allows them to claim refunds on tax paid on inputs and pay tax on the value adds only.