The Upper House of Indian Parliament on Aug. 3 passed the Goods and Services Tax Bill after political parties and state governments agreed on its terms in wide discussions and debates in parliament and outside for over eight years.

Church officials have expressed concern over India passing a new law to unify its tax system, saying they want it to be implemented without burdening the millions of poor in the county.

“Most reforms consider the rich and mostly are in their favor. The needs and concerns of the poor are not considered. That is the concern,” said Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, secretary-general of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India.

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