Even as India is merging some state-run banks, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday said there was no move to privatise them. He also said the target date of April 1 next year to implement a pan-India goods and services tax regime will be met.
"I don’t think that public or political opinion has converged to the point where we can think of privatisation of our banking sector," Jaitley told the Economist India Summit at the Taj Palace Hotel here. "Health of public sector banks first priority for the government."
The finance minister said the GST was a major reform in indirect taxation that had been waiting for long and that it would go a long way in stabilising the country’s various levies and bring them down in the long run.
"There is a national aspiration in support of GST reform. We have set stiff target to implement it. We are running against time to implement GST."