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Mann asks Centre to withdraw GST on Sarais in Amritsar

Condemning the move, in a statement, the CM questioned the taxing of the sarais including Guru Gobind Singh NRI Niwas, Baba Deep Singh Niwas and Mata Bhag Kaur Niwas which are associated with the Golden Temple. They are meant for the accommodation of the devotees visiting the holy shrine and have always been an integral part of the gurdwara complex.

Statesman News Service | Chandigarh |

Describing the decision of the Union government to levy Goods and Services Tax (GST) on the sarais (rest houses for devotees) in the vicinity of Sri Darbar Sahib, Amritsar as arbitrary and irrational, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, on Tuesday, demanded its rollback.
Condemning the move, in a statement, the CM questioned the taxing of the sarais including Guru Gobind Singh NRI Niwas, Baba Deep Singh Niwas and Mata Bhag Kaur Niwas which are associated with the Golden Temple. They are meant for the accommodation of the devotees visiting the holy shrine and have always been an integral part of the gurdwara complex.
The CM said for decades, these sarais have been providing comfortable stay to the Sangat (devotees) arriving at Sri Darbar Sahib on no profit basis. Levying of GST on room charges of these three sarais will lead to higher tariffs thereby putting a huge burden on the pilgrims who come at Sri Darbar sahib for paying obeisance from across the globe.
Mann pointed out that the sarais at the Sri Darbar Sahib complex are non commercial entities and have been constructed for the convenience of thousands of pilgrims coming daily at this holy shrine.
The CM called this decision of the Centre baseless which must be withdrawn without any delay.
He recalled earlier, the NDA government, in another such decision, had imposed GST on langar. Now, through this act, the Union government has bruised the psyche of all the devotees coming at Sri Darbar Sahib in general and Sikhs in particular.