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GST - Credit card holder offered loan - Service rendered by Citi Bank in extending loan is nothing but a service pertaining to the said credit card - Interest component of EMI of loan advanced by bank is not exempted: HCGST -Since the petitioner has prayed for a relief to compel the respondent bank to grant exemption, the writ petition is maintainable: HCCus - Order cancelling Special Warehouse Licence is an appealable order before the Tribunal - Respondent to work out the remedies in accordance with law: HCGST - Printing of content provided by recipient using paper & materials of applicant and supply of such printed leaflets to recipient is a composite supply - Supply of service of printing is principal supply; GST @18%: AARCX - SVLDRS, 2019 - In the SCN, it is not mentioned that the duty demand is jointly and severally payable - A co-noticee is one who is liable for the very same amount along with others: HCGST - Authority has proceeded to pass order for cancellation of registration on new material or facts which neither formed part of SCN nor the same were disclosed to writ applicant - Order set aside: HCGST - TRAN-1 - Rule 117 being directory in nature, the time limit for transitioning of credit would in no manner result in forfeiture of rights even when credit is not availed within the period prescribed: HCGST - Age is just a numberI-T - Amount received in excess of amount standing to credit of partnership firm which is paid towards notional gain on revaluation of land is liable to tax : HCGovt revises tariff value of edible oils & goldI-T - Prosecution of assessee upheld where wilful concealment of correct income by not filing ITR within time stipulated, is clearly established : HCDigital Assets transfer - CBDT notifies Form 26QF for crypto exchangeI-T - Re-assessment - Best of judgment order - Assessee not diligent in pursuing matter, failed to give adequate reply to notices; cannot later allege contravention of natural justice: HCCBDT notifies NFT resulting in transfer of ownership to be excluded for taxation purposeI-T - One opportunity can be granted to assessee as offence is compoundable: HCNiti Aayog & WFP table report on Take Home Ration schemeI-T - Case can be fixed for either limited scrutiny or complete scrutiny and in case it is for complete scrutiny, then no written approval is required by AO from PCIT: ITATConsumer Price Index for Industrial Workers for May 2022 rises by 1.02%I-T - Penalty imposed u/s 271(1)(c) sustained where assessee does not submit any evidence to show that it made voluntary disclosure during assessment proceedings, before detection of bogus loss claimed: ITAT8 Core Industries - Power, Cement, Coal & Fertilisers record high growth in May 2022I-T - Assessee did not write off provisions for doubtful debts due to fear of losing right to civil proceedings for recovery of debts; deduction allowed for provision of doubtful debts: ITATGovt releases calendar for Treasury Bills auctionI-T - Amount received in excess of amount standing to credit of partnership firm which is paid towards notional gain on revaluation of land is liable to tax : ITATGST Tribunal - Challenge is to remove microbes of bias in fleshing it out!Cus - Once in 100% EOU, raw material imported duty free is used in manufacture of final product and same is cleared on payment of duty in DTA, customs duty on raw material cannot be demanded: CESTATGST FileCX - Empty packaging material of cenvatable input is not liable for payment either as excise duty or as cenvat credit under Rule 6(3) of CCR, 2004: CESTATGovt releases Public Debt Management report for Jan-Mar 2022ST - Relevant date for computing six months periods under Notification No. 41/2007-ST to be taken the date when service tax paid and not first day of month following quarter in which export made, merely on the ground of limitation refund cannot be rejected: CESTATMigration of e-BRC Portal/Website to new IT platformST - Since the typographic error in challan number and corelation of compiled record of appellant is impressed upon by them, request of remanding the matter is hereby accepted: CESTAT
 
GST - Constitutional Amendment Bill - EC again says NO - Will Mr Mukherjee take call to move Bill in Parliament this session?

TIOL - COB(WEB) - 201
AUGUST 19, 2010

By Shailendra Kumar, Editor

CONTRARY to the Centre's optimism that the second draft of the Constitutional Amendment Bill for introducing GST would have been a smooth sailing at the Empowered Committee's meeting yesterday, the BJP-led obstinate opposition has created a piquant situation for the Union Finance Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee. Although Finance Ministers of BJP-led States tried hard to convince the Centre that there was nothing political about their stand but the stark reality is that the narrow politics has finally created a stone wall against the much-needed indirect tax reforms in India. Though it was a part of BJP's electoral manifesto to introduce GST with 14% tax rate, but its actions appear to be nailing its lies. As many as 19 States attended yesterday's meeting of the Empowered Committee but six BJP-ruled States, DMK and Bahenji-ruled Uttar Pradesh strongly opposed the introduction of GST from April 1, 2011. Other 11 - largely Congress-ruled States along with Orissa and Kerala - were in favour of presenting the Draft Bill in the Parliament in the current session. If we take all the States, going by their known stands on GST, about a dozen are in opposition, and the rest in favour. Such a sharp rift within the EC has led to the rejection of the Draft Bill.

While addressing the gathering at the EC's meet the Union Finance Minister made fervent appeal to all the States to approve the Draft Bill and also promised to take care of some of their minor concerns like subsumation of entry tax and entertainment tax which are collected by the local bodies, in the third revised draft bill but the States have not shown any willingness to approve the Centre's decision to move the Draft Bill in the current Session. Later in the day all the Members of the EC met the Finance Minister again where Mr Mukherjee made a passionate appeal to the opposition to reconsider their decision but the FM's appeal prima facie does not seem to have cut much ice.

The opposing States' key objection is the dilution of their autonomy and also an unexplained caution against the hurried moves. Their demand is that the GST rates, the exemption threshold and the exemption lists should first be finalised before the Constitution is amended. They also protested against the Centre coming out with a roadmap of GST rates which would consummate at 8% over a period of three years. They wanted the Centre to talk about GST rates only after a consensus was achieved - this seems to be a valid criticism by States as talking about rates was a little premature move.

But, strangely, States have come up with a new concept of FLOOR RATE and a BAND RATE. In other words, they want certain floor rates of GST which means no State can go below that rate. And for the Band Rate, they articulated that they should have the flexibility to increase the rates by one or two per cent as and when they want. It seems a large number of States are in favour of retaining some shade of autonomy. Even Orissa which supported the Draft Bill, expressed its support for the 'Theory of Band Rate'. Some of even Congress-ruled States also favoured the band rate theory!

On his part the Union Finance Minister is learnt to have impressed the gathering that the first step in the right direction would be to evolve a consensus on the Constitutional Amendment Bill, and the talks for ironing out other issues may continue as parallel exercise. His logic is that even if the Draft Bill is tabled, it is not final as it would be referred to the Standing Committee which would continue to interact with the EC and the States. That means States will have more opportunities to amend the wordings in the Bill till the time the same is finalised and tabled in the House during Winter Session. The FM also believes that if the Draft Bill does not go through the House, all other exercise of finalising the GST rates, threshold limit and exemption lists etc would be an exercise in futility.

True, it is a sound thinking on part of Mr Mukherjee. Till the time the Standing Committee gives its final report, all the stake-holders will have a chance to influence the draft bill. Then States also need to remember that merely having the Constitution amended does not mean anything unless follow-up steps are taken. It may be recalled that the Constitution was amended for vesting fiscal power in States for collection of Service Tax but the same was never notified. In other words, having an enabling provision would only facilitate finalising other items on the agenda and does mean that the States would be losing their power to collect VAT. However, the States' other concerns relating to Dispute Settlement Authority etc needs to be paid due attention before it is incorporated in the Bill.

If Netizens go by what Mr Asim Dasgupta said yesterday - a new term has been coined by the States - not consensus but 'consent'! What he probably meant was that the consensus to finalise most the GST agenda items would not do - it has to be consented by each State. If that is going to be the scenario then the EC unfortunately fails as a collective body. There is no need for a forum like EC. The Centre can constitute a Task Force which can meet heads of each State and collect their 'consents' for GST rates and exemptions. The raison de'tre for the EC would disappear and Mr Dasgupta will have no role to play in the making of the history.

Anyway, it is now to be seen what would be the Centre's response to the overall scenario emerging out of the yesterday's meet. The clock of history does not wait for anybody. It has been ticking fast and inching towards the end of the current session of the Parliament. Whether Mr Mukherjee would take the call to go ahead with the Draft Bill as he has the support of more than 60 per cent of the States and let the opposing States voice their concern before the Standing Committee or to let down the Nation which was promised introduction of GST as far back as 2006. Four years have gone past but our States do not seem to be guided either by the clock or by the calendar. Even the CST phase-out is stuck half-way, and undue pressure being mounted on the Centre to dole out continuous compensation. States have failed even here by delaying the hike in the VAT rates so that CST could be bundled out. As per the roadmap it was scheduled to be zero rate by 2010 but it appears the Indian economy will have to put up with CST for one or two more years. Let's hope the Centre and sane elements among the States achieve what they have committed to the Nation within the period of mandate given to them. For the Centre, three more years are there to go but time flies and political upheavals do come if the wheels of history are stopped by the bogey of artificial roadblocks. Let's hope sanity prevails in both the camps so that the unavoidable reforms are not held up.