Decriminalisation of offences under GST
- Recently, the48th GST Council meeting was held which recommended decriminalising certain offences under Section 132 of the Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) Act
- Tax evasion has significantly increased since the introduction of the GST, with many instances of people employing several tactics to evade indirect tax coming to light.
- Technology and information from e-way bills and GST filings are being actively used by tax authorities to detect evasion.
- To ensure smooth intrastate or interstate movement of products, to fight corruption, and to maintain an efficient tax collection system, the GST law imposes strict penalties and requirements that taxpayers must adhere to.
- The GST Law stipulates two main categories of fines. Both simultaneous and concurrent events are possible. The departmental authorities have the power to seize property and levy monetary fines as punishments for breaking the law. The GST Law also includes imprisonment and fines as criminal consequences, although they can only be given out in a criminal court when an accusation has been made.
Recommendations made at the GST Council:
- It has recommended a number of steps to decriminalise GST offences, including: Increasing the minimum tax threshold for filing a GST complaint from one crore to two crore, with the exception of the offence of issuing bills without providing goods or services or both.
- Lowering the compounding percentage from its current range of 50 to 150 percent of the tax amount to 25 to 100 percent.
- Removing the penalty for some offences listed in Section 132 of the CGST Act of 2017, such as hindering or impeding an officer’s performance of his responsibilities, purposefully tampering with tangible evidence, and failing to provide information.
Source The Hindu
For more updates, Click Here