The 48th meeting of the GST Council was held on Saturday, in which several major decisions were taken. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presided over the meeting through virtual medium and gave great relief to traders and common people before the budget. During the meeting, the GST Council agreed to keep certain irregularities in compliance with the rules out of the category of crime. With this, the Council decided to double the limit for initiating prosecution to Rs 2 crore and retain the limit of Rs 1 crore for fake invoices.
Council could decide only on 8 out of 15 issues
After the GST Council meeting, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that due to paucity of time, the GST Council could decide on only eight of the 15 issues included in the agenda. During the meeting, no decision could be taken even on making arrangements to prevent tax evasion in Pan Masala and Gutkha businesses. He said that the time was so short that the report of the GoM could not be given even to the members of the GST Council.
No new tax has been introduced: Nirmala Sitharaman
Nirmala Sitharaman said after the GST Council meeting was over that no new tax has been brought. Apart from this, there was no discussion on levying GST on online gaming and casinos in the meeting. The report of the Group of Ministers (GoM) constituted on online games could not be discussed in the GST Council meeting, but the Central Board of Indirect Taxes (CBIC) chief Vivek Johri said that in any online game, betting on behalf of the player The department is of the opinion to levy tax at the rate of 28 percent only on the amount paid.
GST removed on pulses peel
In the meeting of the GST Council, it was decided to remove GST on the peel of pulses. Tell that till now GST was levied at the rate of 5 percent on the peel of pulses, but now it has been reduced to zero. Along with this, the GST Council clarified that the incentive provided by the central government to banks on low value BHIM-UPI transactions is a subsidy and hence not taxable under GST.
GST Council fixed the definition of SUV
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also clarified about the SUV after the GST Council meeting. He informed that the definition of Sports Utility Vehicles (SUV) has been fixed for levying 22 percent Compensation Cess. The higher rate of compensation cess of 22 per cent is applicable to motor vehicles meeting all the four conditions, which are colloquially known as SUVs. This includes engine capacity exceeding 1500 cc, length exceeding 4000 mm and ground clearance of 170 mm or more.
The Finance Minister said, ‘This clarification is not a new tax. Through this, the tax levied only on the SUV category has been defined. Nirmala Sitharaman said that the discussion on MUVs started when some states asked whether sedans should be included in the SUV category. States also suggested to bring definition of MUV.
3 types of errors out of crime category
Revenue Secretary Sanjay Malhotra told after the meeting that the Council has decided to exclude three types of irregularities from the category of crime under GST. This includes obstructing an officer, willfully tampering with evidence and failing to furnish information. The minimum threshold of tax amount for initiation of prosecution under GST has been raised from Rs 1 crore to Rs 2 crore in cases other than the offense of issue of invoice without supply. Along with this, the compounding amount has also been reduced from 25 to 100 percent. This amount is 50 to 150 percent at present.