Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan today said the state government was looking for an alternative to the controversial Local Body Tax.
Chavan, while talking to reporters here, said he was not averse to the idea of introducing surcharge on VAT or Entry tax as an alternative.
Traders in the state are bitterly opposed to LBT, which is meant to replace the octroi, as the new tax system entails more paperwork and hassles.
The finance department was working on an alternative to LBT, Chavan said, adding that after it was finalised, an ordinance would be issued.
"I want autonomy of the local bodies to remain and am not opposed to a surcharge on VAT. But this will have to be implemented in the entire state. Mumbai (municipal corporation) does not want to scrap octroi," he said.
He lamented that LBT became an issue in the Lok Sabha campaign. "It was said that Congress fared badly because of LBT. I don`t think so because we did badly in Mumbai as well, and there is no LBT here," he added.
LBT was brought in 2009 after Mohan Gurnani of Federations of Association of Maharashtra (FAM) wrote to the government asking for scrapping octroi and introducing LBT, he said. "In fact, Gurnani suggested the name LBT," Chavan said.