28th GST Council meeting in Delhi

The next GST Council meeting will be held on 4 August

The Goods and Services Tax Council has made a decision to exempt sanitary napkins from taxation, interim Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal said on Saturday after the 28th meeting of the council in New Delhi.

Ahead of the Rakshabandhan festival, which celebrates the brother-sister bond, Rakhis have also been exempted from GST.

In terms of tax returns, Mr Sisodia said quarterly returns for traders having turnover up to Rs 5 crore has been approved by the GST Council.

The rate cut applies to footwear, small televisions, water heater, electric ironing machines, refrigerators, lithium ion batteries, hair dryers, vacuum cleaners, food appliances and ethanol, among others.

The tax on handbags, jewellery boxes, wooden boxes for paintings, glass artware, ornamental framed mirrors and handmade lamps, among other things, have been reduced to 12%.

This will be the first time when Piyush Goyal will chair the meeting of GST Council after taking charge as Fiance Minister in the absence of Arun Jaitley.There are also reports that the GST Council may consider setting up a National Appellate Tribunal in Delhi with three regional branches, so that there is no contradiction and dispute in the various pleas filed with it.

Apart from sanitary napkins and rachis, there will be no GST on stone, marble, wooden deities, sal leaves, etc. However, they will need to deposit the tax every month. The minister added that return forms would be simplified into different formats for composite dealers, business-to-business dealers and business-to-consumer dealers. The proposed amendments to the goods and services tax (GST)-related laws, simplification of GST returns, the creation of GST appellate tribunal and the revenue position of states were among the key items slated for discussion in the 28th GST Council meeting. Keeping this in mind, GST Council in October, 2017 had temporarily suspended RCM, as it was increasing compliance burden on taxpayers.

The most-awaited decision is on the single tax return filing system.

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