Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Life&Culture | By Rose Hansen

GST Council relaxes return filing rules for July-Aug

GST Council relaxes return filing rules for July-Aug

India will launch a new national Goods and Services Tax (GST) as planned on July 1, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Sunday, but will let companies file late returns for the first two months so that they can adapt to a new online filing system.

Arun Jaitley with chief economic adviser Arvind Subramanian and minister of state for finance Santosh Gangwar in New Delhi on Sunday.

After complaints surfaced of real estate developers asking for a higher rate of taxation of 12 per cent, against 4.5 per cent now, after the goods and services tax (GST) rollout from July 1 from homebuyers who have booked flats and made partial payments, the finance ministry has asked the housing and urban poverty alleviation (HUPA) ministry to sensitise states and the real estate regulator to hold consultations with developers.

The new filing date for sales in the first month, that is July, will now be September 5 instead of August 10. Hotels with tariffs between Rs 2,500 and Rs 7,500 will now attract a GST rate of 18%.

The Council made a decision to tax lotteries in two segments-with state-run ones attracting 12% GST and the state- authorised 28%.

Council has also cleared six rules, including anti- profiteering. "I hope we are not compelled to use it".

A slight relaxation of two months has been given to the businesses to prevent lack of preparedness for the new tax regime. "We do not have the luxury of time to defer implementation of GST", Jaitley told reporters after the penultimate meeting of the GST Council.

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The GST is scheduled to be rolled out from July 1 and tax rates have already been fixed for nearly all goods and services. Isaac, however, said that the check posts would be still be in existence in Kerala until the e-way was functional.

The Finance Minister said registration of tax payers was going on in a satisfactory manner. The anti-profiteering body is expected to have a lifespan of two years.

On Monday, India reduced the proposed GST rates for 66 items to ease some of the concerns that the tax could hurt businesses in some sectors. "Till then, an alternative rule will operate. which will authorise the existing system of the states to continue", Jaitley said. The GST Council will meet again on 30th June on the eve of the launch.

Input tax credit, being the crux of GST, will ensure wider coverage of tax payers in the supply chain.

The Council also decided the threshold limit for the composition scheme for special category states.

Another set of rules dealing with the contentious E-way bill was discussed at length but could not be finalised because of divergent opinions among states. Earlier, the minimum tariff for this tax bracket was above Rs 5,000.

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