With step-by-step progress towards Goods and Services Tax ("GST"), the Country is all set to witness the biggest indirect tax reform of unmatched importance in independent India. In order to engage with the stakeholders and invite comments from the public at large, the Central Government had put the Revised Model GST Law on public domain on November 26, 2016 [First Model GST Law put on public domain on June 14, 2016]. Industry Inc made threadbare analyses of the provisions contained therein and various suggestions were submitted to the Government through various forums.
Taking into consideration the suggestions received from Trade and Industry, the GST Council, in its meeting held on March 4, 2017, at Vigyan Bhawan, in New Delhi, under the Chairmanship of the Union Minister for Finance & Corporate Affairs, Shri. Arun Jaitley has approved the Draft CGST Bill and the Draft IGST Bill as vetted by the Union Law Ministry.
Further, the GST Council, in its 12th meeting held on March 16, 2017, had approved the Draft Bills for implementing GST in States and Union Territories ("UTs").Previously, the GST Council had also approved a Draft Bill to compensate States for any revenue loss arising out of GST for a period of five years.
Clearing the decks for implementation of GST In India, Finance Minister Shri. Arun Jaitley on March 27 tabled four Bills of GST legislations in Lok Sabha. The discussion on the four Bills i.e. CGST, IGST, UTGST and Compensation Cess Bill could be taken up on Tuesday.
To access the GST Bills as introduced in Lok Sabha on March 27, please access the following link:
- CGST Bill as introduced in Lok Sabha
- Compensation Cess Bill as introduced in Lok Sabha
- IGST Bill as introduced in Lok Sabha
- UTGST Bill as introduced in Lok Sabha
The Government is looking at the passage of the GST Bills in the Lower House by March 29 or latest by March 30. Then, these will move to the Rajya Sabha and this gives the Government enough time to bring back any amendment adopted by the Upper House to the Lok Sabha. The amendments can either be rejected or incorporated by the Lok Sabha.
Once these Bills are cleared by Parliament, the States will then take the SGST Bill for their adoption, in their respective assemblies.