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VAT on essential commodities till Mar 31, 06 to continue for 6 mths

By Staff
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Mumbai, Apr 19 (UNI) Maharashtra Finance Minister Jayant Patil today said that the rate of Value Added Tax (VAT) on 14 essential commodities till March 31, 2006, would continue for another six months.

Making a statement in the Legislative Assembly today, Mr Patil said the government was yet to take a decision on lowering VAT on restaurants and hotels, who had called for a strike today demanding lower taxes.

He said essential commodities like rice,wheat,flour,pulses,coconut,jaggery did not attract VAT last year. However, VAT was levied on them from April one this year.

He said VAT on dry fruits and tea,which was raised to 12.5 per cent would be lowered to four per cent.

The minister said several other states had not started implementing the VAT on essential commodities. He said the issue would be discussed in the empowered committee of finance ministers.

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