Image Source - The Statesman
Today, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, “urging him to exempt Covid-related life-saving drugs and equipment from GST and customs duty to eliminate supply constraints amidst the rapid surge in fresh Covid cases in the second wave of the pandemic.”
She also urged PM Modi to strengthen health infrastructure and to increase the supplies of equipment, medicines, and oxygen to treat Covid patients.
Miss Banerjee wrote :
“A large number of organizations, individuals, and benevolent agencies have come forward to donate oxygen concentrators, cylinders, cryogenic storage tank, tankers, and tank containers and Covid related drugs. Donations from these organizations will supplement the efforts of the state government in meeting the huge gap in demand and supply.”
She added, “many of the donors and agencies have approached the State government to consider exemptions of these items from customs duty/ SGST/CGST/IGST.”
The letter added :
“As the rate structure falls under the preview of the Central government, I would request these items may be exempted from GST/Customs duty and other such duty and taxes to help remove supply constraints of above drugs and equipment and contribute to effective management of Covid pandemic.“
Mamata Banerjee pointed out that everyone including her state government is trying the best to deal with this pandemic.
Everyone is making all efforts to channel resources from original sources, including ensuring the availability of life-saving drugs and oxygen for Covid treatment.
Miss Banerjee attacked the Centre for not controlling any measures during this pandemic.
She said the center is solely responsible for the spread of the disease in the country.
As per the information, over the past few days, she has written three letters to the Prime Minister requesting him to allow free-of-cost vaccination against Covid to all.
Only to ensure adequate supply of essential drugs and hike allocation of medical oxygen for West Bengal.
Miss Banerjee said :
“Why are they not allotting Rs 30,000 crores for vaccines when they are making new Parliament and statues, spending Rs 20,000 crores?”