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Centre to help 21 states borrow Rs 1 lakh crore

NEW DELHI: The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meeting on Monday ended in stalemate but the Centre said it would go ahead and facilitate the Rs 1.1 lakh crore borrowing option for the 21 states that have expressed their preference for this plan. Some opposition-ruled states contended that this would be "illegal" and will challenge this in the Supreme Court, saying any decision on the borrowing options needed to be endorsed by the council, setting up a potential showdown with the Centre. "There was no consensus," Finance minister and GST Council chairman Nirmala Sitharaman told reporters after the meeting.

The 21 states - ruled by BJP and Tamil Nadu - had accepted the option of borrowing Rs 1.1 lakh crore to bridge the deficit. They are expected to ask the Centre to quickly implement the mechanism. "We are open to anyone who wants us to facilitate," Sitharaman said. "Already a lot of people (states) have said that they're approaching us tomorrow morning.

News source ~ Economic Times