GST roll-out: Get Set for Turbulence

The worst tendencies of the Indian State and politics and business have found their way into the design of the GST that was launched yesterday. Many of the flaws in the design were the result of forced political compromise, writes P Chidambaram

Nothing is more exhilarating than the promise of change, especially if it will be a change for the better. When it was first announced, the Goods and Services Tax held that promise. It still could be a harbinger of a change for the better but, on a consideration of all the aspects, it seems to me the GST that came into effect yesterday is an imperfect tax that will usher in a long period of turbulence.
As an idea, GST is unexceptionable. The Constitution of India (Art 301) promised a common market for India. However, the tax systems of our governments ensured that the country remained divided and fragmented. Inter-state barriers were erected, taxes were collected and evaded, rent-seeking flourished, and trade and commerce suffered.

VAT and GST are major reforms

The Value Added Tax was the first comprehensive measure to bring uniformity in the tax systems of the states, but it was a state-level reform. Central tax laws (excise and service tax) and the principal state tax law (VAT) remained apart. Together, they imposed a heavy tax burden upon businesses, apart from the huge cost of complying with multiple taxes.
Once VAT was implemented throughout the country, the next logical step was GST. I seized the opportunity in 2006 to announce that it was our goal to implement GST by 2010. Delayed by seven years (does the Finance Minister remember who delayed it?), GST came into effect yesterday. I welcome GST but I wish ... Continue Reading ... Indian Express


1) Harbinger  (अग्र-दूत , सन्देशवाहक) (Noun): hahr-bin-jer
Meaning -one that pioneers in or initiates a major change ,something that precedes and indicates the approach of something or someone.
Synonyms - Precursor , messenger ,sign , forecast
Antonyms - Follower , derivative , progeny
Example - India and the world are looking at Budget 2018 as the harbinger of growth.

2) Turbulence  (अशांति) (Noun) tur-byuh-lens
Meaning - a state of violent disturbance and disorder (as in politics or social conditions generally) ,instability in the atmosphere
Synonyms - uproar , unrest , disturbance
Antonyms - stability , calmness 
Example -The industrial revolution in the country was a period of great turbulence.

3) Draconian (बेरहम , कठोर) (Adjective): dra-co-ni-an
Meaning - excessively harsh and severe (laws and application)
Synonyms -Strict , oppressive , rigourous
Antonyms - Bendable , malleable , ductile
Example - In the movie, the draconian villain killed not only his enemies but also their children.

4)  Deferment ( मोहलत ) (Noun):  dih-fur-ment
Meaning - act of putting off to a future time, officially sanctioned postponement
Synonyms - delay , suspension , postponement
Antonyms -Begin , hustle , prepone
Example - In the first years, he was given a deferment from military duty to assess bomb damage to various sites of London.

5) Usher (प्रवेशक) (Noun): ahs-er
Meaning - a guide that shows someone to their seats.
Synonyms - doorkeeper , attendant , guide
Antonyms - followtrail
Example - Shah Rukh Khan said that he got his first earning by working as an usher in Pankaj Udhas concert.

6) Exhilarating (आनन्दकर  ) (Adjective)- ex-hil-a-rat-ing
Meaning - producing intense feelings of joy or excitement ,Refreshingly thrilling.
Synonyms - inspiring , thrilling , energizing
Antonyms- gloomy , monotonous
Example - During our family vacation, my youngest daughter enjoyed the exhilarating experience of swimming with the dolphins.

7) Diarchy (द्वैध शासन) (Verb): dahy-ahr-kee
Meaning -a form of government having two joint rulers
Synonyms - Co-rule , Biarchy , jointly
Antonyms - monarchy , autocracy . single rule
Example -The Government of India Act 1919 had introduced the system of diarchy to govern the provinces of British India.

8) Fitment (उपकरण ,साज़-सामान) (Noun) : fit-ment
Meaning -   any of the items furnishing or equipping a room
Synonyms -Appliance , device , equipments.
Example - All the fitments in his apartment are chosen with care and expense.

9) Dirigiste ( ऐसी प्रणाली , जिसमें किसी देश की अर्थव्यवस्था पर एक सरकार का बहुत नियंत्रण हो ) (Adjective): di-ri-gist
Meaning - relating to a system in which a government has a lot of control over a country's economy
Synonyms - supreme , dominant , paramount
Antonyms - inferior , junior , least
Example -  Most modern economies can be characterized as dirigiste to some extent – for instance, the state may exercise directive action by performing or subsidizing research and development of new technologies, through government procurement .

9) Plummet (Verb) ( अचानक गिर जाना ) -  pluhm-itMeaning - to drop abruptly
Synonyms -  Fall , descend , go down , decrease
Antonyms - Ascend , rise , escalate
Example (English) -   Mild snowfall plummeted temperature in Himachal Pradesh.
Example (Hindi) - हल्के हिमपात से हिमाचल प्रदेश का तापमान अचानक गिर गया।

Now considering the article above as a Reading Comprehension question, try to answer the following questions-
  • What positive aspects of GST are emphasised by the author ?
  • Which was the first comprehensive measure to bring uniformity in the tax systems of the states?
To check your vocabulary , we have given below some words. Try to make sentences with these words in the comment section which will be reviewed by us.
  • Infirmities
  • Subsume
  • Nurtured
  • Stubborn

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