The Congress legislator from Margao, Mr Digambar Kamat, on Thursday told the state legislative assembly that the effect of global recession has had adverse effects on the country and the state economy and the state’s woes were compounded by the suspension of mining activities.
Participating in general discussion on budget, he also said that taxation provisions made in the state budget were likely to hit the common man, even as he pointed out various mistakes in the economic survey. He also brought to the notice of the House that there were allegations of manipulations in the e-tendering process of government departments.
Mr Kamat a former Chief Minister further said that the state should prepare itself to meet the challenges in view of shift from Value added taxation to good and service taxation regime to be introduced soon. He also said that the move to tax the construction industry, which was passing through bad phase, was unwise.
Mr Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco, the Congress legislator from Curtorim, accused the government of squeezing the common man through taxation even as he questioned as to what percentage of the tax collected would ultimately reach the common man. He also said that the government has taxed the tourism sector to the optimum level as it was an easy target.
Mr Lourenco further said that while in opposition the Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Parrikar was against the public private partnership projects but on assuming power he has become the biggest supporter of the PPP projects and increased funds five times.
The independent legislator from Porvorim, Mr Rohan Khaunte, while pointing out that there was no innovation, no planning and no new ideas in the budget, urged the government to take new initiatives in the industrial, tourism and agriculture sectors, which could serve as alternatives to mining.
Mr Khaunte wondered as to why the Tourism Promotion Board was not yet set up, even as he urged that the farmers should be given administrative support by reaching out to them. He pointed out that subsidies have not been given to the farmers for over a year and half. He also demanded revamping of the agriculture department.
The Porvorim MLA further said that the state should identify what industries should come to the state and create infrastructure to facilitate the investors willing to come to Goa. He also wondered whether the schemes announced by the government were really required even as he went on to add that the government should have allowed existing schemes to stabilise.
Mr Chandrakant Kavlekar, the Congress legislator from Quepem, said that the benefits of government schemes should reach all and that the distribution of the same has to be done in a transparent manner.
Others who participated in the discussion were Mr Naresh Sawal, Mr Ganesh Gaonkar, Mr Nilesh Cabral, Mr Glen Ticlo, Mr Carlos Almeida and Mr Benjamin Silva. [NT]