Finally, sanitary napkins to be exempt from GST

India ends controversial tax on sanitary pads

India ends controversial tax on sanitary pads

The Union finance minister said the decisions taken today would be applicable from July 27 and the GST Council would not focus on job creation apart from collecting revenue.

Other items for which the GST rate was cut include footwear, water heaters, electric irons, refrigerators, lithium ion batteries (used in electric vehicles), hair dryers, vacuum cleaners, food appliances and ethanol.

Footwear costing up to Rs 1,000 will now attract 5 percent GST. Since its launch last July, the GST Council has reduced rates on over 320 items and with Saturday's reduction, the number will swell by nearly a third.

► GST on imported urea reduced to 5%. The rate cuts come on the back of an improvement in collections in recent months.

"Every state wanted that the rates on these items be lowered so that the middle income households are benefitted".

Various fabrics, like Chenille fabrics, mats made via handlooms, fertilizer-grade phosphoric acid, which were earlier under the 12 per cent bracket, will be charged 5 per cent, while the GST on washing machine reduced from 28 per cent to 18 per cent. Mr Goyal said, return forms will be simplified into two formats - Sugaam and Sahaj.

Tax filers with an annual turnover of less than ₹5 crore a year need to file returns on a quarterly basis while paying tax on a monthly basis. This will surely impact the buyer-seller contractual relationships, said Archit Gupta, Founder and CEO, ClearTax. The GST Council is likely to come up with more details on this regard, which will give relief to thousands of taxpayers under the new GST regime.

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It also approved an amendment which will enable taxpayers to opt for multiple registrations within a state in respect of multiple places of business located within the same state. On the revenue loss from these cuts, he said with simplification of processes, compliance would improve which would in turn boost revenue.

Reverse charge is a mechanism where the recipient of the good or service will have to pay GST, which is otherwise paid by the supplier.

The council also approved the proposal to allow quarterly return filing for taxpayers with a turnover of upto Rs 5 crore, a move that will benefit almost 93 percent of tax assessees as they would now be required to file returns only once in three months.

"I think the 28 percent tax slab should be done away with". The RCM, which was already on hold till September 2018, is considered as an anti-evasion tool.

Fortified milk has also been fully exempted from GST.

A Committee led by Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi will look into ways to promote digital payments using these modes.

"A deifinite timeline will be declared once we are informed about it by the GST Network", Goyal said. This was the first Council meeting he chaired after taking charge of the Finance Ministry.

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