GUWAHATI, April 19 - The two-day-long meeting of the Group of Ministers on transport (GoM) constituted by the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways concluded here today with adoption of the �Guwahati Declaration� which called for �one nation one tax� policy, reform of the vehicle fitness regime and undertaking of sustained road safety campaign, among other things.
The meeting, which witnessed participation of transport ministers from 12 states as well senior officials from other states, also brought out an interim report based on the deliberations.
Addressing the media after the meeting, Yoonus Khan, chairman of the GoM, said the deliberation was held on the long pending issue of inter-state permit for passenger vehicles. �The nation has witnessed far reaching reforms after introduction of national permits for goods vehicles. It was opined that the ease of movement across the states in public vehicles is preferable over private cars. The group, therefore, recommended that the national passenger vehicles permits may be issued by the states for passenger vehicles,� he said.
The rates recommended for this is Rs 3 lakh per year for luxury buses, Rs 2 lakh per year for deluxe buses and Rs 25,000 per year for taxis.
�In order to ascertain seamless transportation of tourist buses, a consensus among the states emerged that a composite annual fee model be implemented throughout the country, as has been done for the national permit trucks since 2010. It was also observed that one nation one tax policy be adopted in vehicular tax regime,� he said.
To harmonize the rates and charges in various segments which vary from state to state, a committee consisting of transport secretaries of five states, including Assam, has been formed to prepare a report within 15 days.
Khan, who is also the Transport Minister of Rajasthan, said that the GoM�s reports will be submitted to the Union government for final approval. He said the GoM noted that variation of levy of tax on private vehicles within the states be minimized so that the people do not tend to go for registration of their vehicles in lower tax jurisdiction.
�It was also agreed that no tax be realized in case a private vehicle migrates from one state to another owing to relocation of vehicle owner. The issues pertaining to removal of hassle in renewal of licence, removal of variation in charges, fees and renewal rates among states, promoting public transport and shared mobility, environment friendly transport via e-vehicles, etc., were deliberated and consensus made out to achieve all the above objectives,� Khan said.