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Gadkari promises help

Nitin Gadkari on Thursday assured the crisis-hit automobile industry of all possible support from the government

By Our Special Correspondent in New Delhi

  • Published 6.09.19, 3:32 AM
  • Updated 6.09.19, 3:32 AM
Senior BJP leader and Union minister Nitin Gadkari
Senior BJP leader and Union minister Nitin Gadkari Telegraph picture

Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday assured the crisis-hit automobile industry of all possible support from the government, including taking up the demand of GST reduction with finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Gadkari, the road transport and highways minister, also said his ministry would give out 68 road projects worth up to Rs 5 lakh crore in the next three months to help generate demand for commercial vehicles.

With the impending price increase of vehicles and the upcoming BS-VI deadline, “It is your (industry's) demand that there should be a reduction in tax of petrol and diesel vehicles. Your suggestions are good. I will take your message to the finance minister,” Gadkari said at the annual SIAMconvention here.

“Even if it (GST) is reduced for some time, it will help,” he added. “I will follow it up with the finance minister. The sector needs help right now to increase sales,” Gadkari said.

The minister said, like the way GST on electric vehicles has been reduced to 5 per cent from 12 per cent, he would propose to the finance ministry to extend the same benefit to hybrids vehicles.

No ban

Gadkari, who had in 2017 stated the auto industry would be “bulldozed” if they didn’t push for electric vehicles, also struck a reconciliatory note by saying that the government has no intention to ban petrol and diesel vehicles.

“There have been talks that the government plans to ban petrol and diesel vehicles. The government has no such plan. We are not going to do anything like that,” he said. 

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