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Haj pilgrims: GST, user charges source of income for governments, airports

Hyderabad: Haj pilgrims are becoming the source of income for the governments and the airport authorities. This year, 1.75 lakh pilgrims will proceed to Saudi Arabia for performing Haj.

Ministry of Minority Affairs is claiming that this year, more number of Haj pilgrims is being sent. If the statistics of the government is reckoned, it will get Rs. 166 crore income which is being collected as GST at the rate of 18% on air tickets. In addition to it, every Haj Pilgrim has to pay Rs. 9500 towards user charges to the airport.

Representations are being sent from various state governments to exempt Haj pilgrims from paying GST but so far, government has not taken any decision. The tragic part of it is that TS Govt. has not sent any letter to the Central Govt. for exempting Haj pilgrims from payment of GST. Not only this, it did not send any official to New Delhi for attending Wakf Conference.

TDP is the ruling party in AP. Despite being an ally of NDA, it had opposed Triple Talaq. Now, this party is making a representation for dropping GST. On the contrary, TRS is keeping quiet.

From Telangana, 4000 Haj pilgrims will go to Saudi Arabia. If GST is collected from these passengers, Central Govt. will earn Rs. 3.65 crore and the State Govt. will get 50% of it. With the quiet attitude of TS Govt., it seems that it has only verbal sympathy for the Muslims.

–Siasat News

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