oppn parties Making GST Good and Simple

News Snippets

  • In reply to a question in Parliament, the government says it is empowered to lawfully intercept, monitor or decrpyt information stored in a computer resource in the interest of sovereignty or integrity of India
  • Police stop a 12-year old girl on her way to the Sabarimala shrine
  • In Karnataka, the JD(S) indicates that it might support the BJP government if it falls short of numbers after the bypolls
  • Congress pips the BJP in local body elections in Rajasthan, winning 961 wards to the BJPs 737
  • After Airtel and Vodafone-Idea, Jio also indicates that tariffs will be raised from December
  • Sources in Shiv Sena say that they might revive the alliance with the BJP if it offers the 50:50 deal
  • A miffed Sanjay Rout of the Shiv Sena says that it will take "100 births" to understand Sharad Pawar
  • Mobile operators Vodafone-Idea and Airtel decide to raise tariffs from next month
  • Sharad Pawar meets Sonia Gandhi and says more time needed for government formation in Maharashtra
  • Justice S A Bobde sworn in as the 47th Chief Justice of India
  • Supreme Court holds hotels liable for theft of vehicle from their parking area if parked by valet, says "owner's risk" clause is not a shield from such liability
  • Finance Minister says she is receiving feedback from many sectors that recovery is happening as there is lower stress
  • Sabarimala temple opens, but police bar the entry of women below 50 years
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says Air India and BPCL to be sold off by March
  • Media person Rajat Sharma resigns as DDCA president
Two Muslim litigants in Ayodhya refuse to accept the Supreme Court order, say review petition might be filed
oppn parties
Making GST Good and Simple

By Ashwini Agarwal

The GST Council, in its meeting on January 18 at New Delhi, has decided to make e-waybill mandatory even for inter-state movement of goods of value over Rs 50000. It has decided to review the composition scheme as it feels the scheme is being misused. The Council revised the rates on 29 items and 53 services. It also decided to simplify compliance by moving towards a one-stage return filing very soon.

The first measure outlined above is driven by the Council’s perception that there is widespread evasion and underreporting by traders. Once the inter-state e-waybill system is in place, the government would come to know whether the goods for which the e-waybill number was generated are reflected in sales and purchase invoices and shown in returns. That way, evasion will become almost impossible.

The second measure of reviewing the composition scheme is necessitated by paltry collections from traders who have opted under this scheme. This scheme allows traders who have sales under Rs 20 lakhs to just pay 1% as GST, without of course input benefits on their purchases. But only Rs 307cr have been collected from more than 17 lakh traders registered under the scheme. This amounts to an absurd figure of just Rs 1806 per trader. Hence, the government’s suspicions, that the scheme is being misused, are well founded.

The Council also received a detailed presentation from a group, comprising of Bihar deputy CM Sushil Modi and Nandan Nilekani, among others, on simplifying processes to make return filing user friendly on the one hand and anti-evasion on the other. Carrying this forward, the Council has agreed in principle to do away with GSTR1, GSTR2 and GSTR3 forms and replace them with a single form, the GSTR3B, along with the uploading of supply invoices. That will ease compliance in a major way.

The GST regime is a vital cog in taking the economy forward by doing away with multiple and confusing taxes. It is also necessary to plug the loopholes that were available to unscrupulous traders to beat the system and avoid paying taxes. Hence, it is imperative that the GST itself is made super simple. Just naming it “good and simple” tax will not do and the government and the Council have realized that. That is why all efforts are being made to simplify the regime and make it less taxing for traders and industry. It is now upon the taxpayers to come forward and report each and every transaction and pay the tax due on them.