No new taxation, no tax increase: Nirmala Sitharaman after GST Council meeting
New Delhi, Oct 17: Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday said the GST Council is not increasing tax on any item and no new taxation has been brought in.
Sitharaman chaired the 48th meeting of the GST Council via virtual mode in New Delhi today. “Union Finance Minister Smt. @nsitharaman chairs the 48th meeting of the GST Council via virtual mode, in New Delhi, today. Along with the FM, Union Minister of State for Finance Shri @mppchaudhary, besides Finance Ministers of States & UTs (with legislature) and Senior officers from Union Government & States are also attending the meeting,” Ministry of Finance tweeted.
Eight of the agenda points of the 48th GST council meeting were discussed and the remaining would be carried on to the next meeting, she said. “In sequential order seven agenda points were attended with an additional one related to data sharing was also taken up,” the finance minister said. “In this 48th GST Council Meeting, there hasn’t been any tax increase on any item. No new taxation has been brought in. Everything that has been done is to issue clarifications where ambiguity of interpretations prevailed,” a news agency quoted her at the conclusion of the meeting.
The last meeting of the GST Council was held in late June 2022 in Chandigarh where tax was rationalised for numerous items including LED lamps, solar water heaters, among other items and it came to effect on July 18.
Meanwhile, the council has recommended decriminalising three different types of offences, including the tampering of material evidence. “A major path-breaking recommendation with regard to decriminalising certain offences,… three kinds of offences, were taken. They pertain to obstructing or preventing any officers in the discharge of his duties, deliberate tampering of material evidence, and failure to supply information,” said Revenue Secretary Sanjay Malhotra.
However, it has to be noted that it will not be applicable to those offences such as fake invoicing.
Further, the council has decided to reduce GST rates on pulses husk and knives from 5 per cent to nil. GST on ethyl alcohol for the purpose of blending of ethanol has been exempted. Earlier, it was taxed at 18 per cent. “Already we have allowed 5 per cent reduced rate for blending with petrol by oil marketing companies. Now this exemption is being extended to refineries as well. This will promote our efforts on blending and reduce our dependence on imported crude and thereby save precious foreign exchange,” the secretary added.
The 48th GST Council meeting was also attended by Union Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Choudhary besides Finance Ministers of States and UTs (with legislature) and senior officers of the Ministry of Finance and States/ UTs.
Story first published: Saturday, December 17, 2022, 17:53 [IST]
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