AGARTALA, April 27 (IANS): States should get 50 percent of the central tax share instead of the current 32, Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said Wednesday.
"To ease tax burden on the common people and to give better services to them by not raising tax by the states, the centre should grant 50 percent of the central tax to the states instead of the existing 32 percent," Sarkar said while inaugurating a checkpost on the Assam-Tripura border.
With modern facilities and four big electronic weighbridges, the checkpost, the biggest in the country, has been constructed at Dharmanagar at a cost of Rs.45 crore.
"Despite the Supreme Court's direction, the union government has not been supplying adequate foodgrains to the poor. We have been demanding the supply of 35 kg of rice to each poor family every month at a rate of Rs.2 per kg, but the central government says they have no money," Sarkar said.
Sarkar, also a politburo member of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), said the central government was collecting massive amounts of money from the people in the form of various taxes but this was being looted by a section of people through scams like the Commonwealth Games, the spectrum allocation, housing and others.
The Tripura government Tuesday also increased value added tax (VAT) by one percent to cope with the severe financial crisis.
According to Finance Minister Badal Chaudhury, the state would earn additional Rs.55 crore annually from the move.
"Tripura is one of the last states to increase VAT rates to 13.5 percent. The VAT rate of 12.5 percent has been increased to 13.5 percent by almost all states in India," Chaudhury added.