While BJP activists in the state were busy protesting against the central government’s decision to increase the diesel price on Friday, their own BJP government in Goa quietly increased the Value Added Tax (VAT) on diesel by 2%. The result: diesel in Goa is now approximately Rs 49.70 per litre, a combination of the Rs 5 hike introduced by the Centre, the Rs 1.37 hike courtesy the state’s VAT increase and additional transport costs, said officials.
The VAT hike, issued via a notification late Friday night, came hours after the state civil supplies minister announced a coupon system to provide an additional six LPG cylinders at subsidized rates in the state.
Goa’s increased VAT on diesel is meant to increase the state’s revenue collection for the current financial year, states the notification. “The state government collects around Rs 300 crore from VAT on diesel. This increase will give an additional revenue of Rs 50 crore,” said S G Korgaonkar, commissioner, commercial taxes. The total VAT on diesel collected by the state will now be 20% from the previous 18%.
Goa Petrol Dealers Association president Paresh Joshi said the total increase on diesel in Goa is Rs 6.71 per litre.
BJP state Yuva Morcha president and Sanquelim MLA Pramod Sawant, defending the BJP government’s decision to hike VAT on diesel, said, “Government decision is to generate revenue for the state. As compared to other states, Goa’s VAT on diesel is still less.”