Edited By Naveen Kumar Pandey | Language | Updated: 12 Jun 2020, 11:45:00 PM IST
The Goods and Services Tax Council (GST Council) halved the interest on delayed filing of returns for February, March and April, giving relief to small taxpayers with a turnover of up to five crore rupees. Now its rate will be nine percent. However, this benefit will be given only when the returns are filed by September 2020. Apart from this, the GST Council also extended the deadline for filing returns for May, June and July till September. There will be no interest or late fees. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman gave this information while addressing the reporters after the GST Council meeting.
Question on revenue collection from GST
When asked about the revenue during the two months of the lockdown, the Finance Minister said, 'States know how revenue collection has been. It is only in the range of 45 percent. Finance Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey said, all states are well aware of the amount they are getting every month. He said, 'It is not a question that we are telling them about this. The Center and all the states are discussing together how much revenue we are getting every month. These revenue figures are not final. Pandey also holds the Revenue Secretary.
He said, 'Since the time for filing returns has been extended, due to this, we will come to know later about the actual amount of revenue for April, May and June. It will be known only when the last day passes. The central government has not released revenue collection figures for April and May due to lower GST collections. Traditionally, the revenue collection figures for a month are released on the first day of the following month.
Time to file returns by end of June
The government had extended the GST return filing period to the end of June for three months in March (March, April and May). This was done to provide relief to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME). Under this, no delay fee, penalty or interest will have to be paid to bodies with a turnover of less than Rs 5 crore for the delay till the end of June in filing returns.
Interest on tax paid will be half
Sitharaman said that for small taxpayers with a turnover of up to five crore rupees, the interest on delay in filing returns of February, March and April has been halved. Now its rate will be nine percent. However, this benefit will be given only when the returns are filed by September 2020. Apart from this, the deadline for filing returns for May, June and July has also been extended till September. There will be no interest or late fees for this.
Late fees waived if there is no tax liability
The Finance Minister said that during July 2017 to January 2020, registered units with zero tax liability will not have to pay any fee for late filing of GST returns. Sitharaman said that for other units, the levy fee has been reduced to a maximum of Rs 500 for the delay in filing monthly sales returns for the period from July 2017 to January 2020. He said that the GST Council discussed the impact of the corona virus epidemic. Apart from this, the impact of GST collection on 'inverted duty structure' on some industries was also discussed.
Special council meeting in July
The GST Council also talked about the inverse fee structure in the textile industry. The GST Council is the apex body deciding on the indirect tax regime. The Finance Minister said that the issue of taxing pan masala is expected to be discussed in the next regular meeting of the GST Council. He said that there will be a special meeting of the council in July in which only one issue of discussion – the compensation needs of the states will be there.
Expert said – welcome step
EY's tax partner Abhishek Jain said, “There has been no announcement for big businesses. However, it is a welcome step for small businesses to eliminate late fees and give extra time for filing returns. He said that small businesses were aggressively seeking Rahm in view of the current financial crisis. His requests have been given good attention by the GST Council.
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