Goods and Service Tax (GST) is a single indirect tax that is levied on supply of goods and services. This Goods and Services Act was passed in the Parliament on 29th of March 2017. This act came into effect from the 1st of July 2017. Multiple indirect taxes that the Central Government and the State Governments impose on suppliers and consumers are absorbed by GST. A number of countries around the globe Like Australia, Canada, Malaysia, Singapore, New Zealand have already implemented GST.
Atal Behari Vajpayee our 10th Prime Minister was the first in our country to recommend the idea of adopting GST. The GST is now one of the most discussed topics at this point of time. One of the reasons for implementation of GST is the impact it will have in keeping the inflation in check. Further the different taxes applicable to different commodities across different states will be now uniform across the country depending on the category of items or services. The GST tax falls under different slabs which are 0%, 5%, 12%, 18% and 28%. There is also a special rate of 0.25% on rough precious and semi precious stones and 3% on gold. Almost 60% of the goods and commodities come under the 18% or the 28% tax bracket. Now recently the Finance Minister has announced the addition of 5% GST on all the catering services, the food and drinks supplied by IRCTC in trains, platform and stations. A letter has been sent by the Finance ministry to the Railway board to clarify any doubt or uncertainty.
By: Madhuchanda Saxena