Goods and Services Tax - Some Fun Facts that you must know !
2017-06-30 15:10:30   Anukanksha
On the eve GST (Goods and Services Tax) rollout, here are some fun facts about the historical day and India's most ambitious tax reform since its independence in 1947.
1. It’ s been 17 years since GST was first conceptualised in India. That’s right! In the year 2000, the Vajpayee government started a discussion on GST by setting up an empowered committee headed by Asim Dasgupta. He was then the Finance Minister of West Bengal.
However, congress claims GST to be their brainchild.
2. India to join about 160 countries who have GST, Currently, around 160 countries have implemented the GST or VAT (value added tax) in some form or the other.
France was the first country to have introduced GST.
India, being a federal (and HATKE) country, is going to have a dual-GST structure i.e. Central GST and State GST. The only other country with a dual GST is Canada.
3. GST rate - Globally, the standard GST rate varies from 1.5% in Aruba to 27% in Hungary.
The GST Council in India has proposed a four-tier rate structure with two standard rates – 12% and 18%, a lower rate of 5% for the essentials and a higher rate of 28% for the luxury goods and sin goods.
The government may even levy a cess on sin goods over and above the higher rate of 28%. The cess will fulfil two purposes – discourage the consumption of sin goods and source additional revenue to compensate the states.
4. The crucial midnight GST session
The midnight session to change over the new tax system would be addressed by President of India Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi.
This midnight night session is so significant because holding a midnight session is celebratory in nature. Prior to this the midnight session has taken place only twice- 50th year of Independence and 50th anniversary of the Quit India Movement. This would be the first time that a mid-night session of Parliament would be held to celebrate a current event rather than celebrating events in the past.
5. The starry night
It will be a gala event at central hall of the Parliament that has been loaned for the launch of the historic reform. Parliamentary affairs minister Ananth Kumar wrote an invitation letter to all members of Parliament in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.
The politicians, industrialists and celebrities – from megastar Amitabh Bachchan to industry doyen Ratan Tata are among the attendees. Former Prime ministers Manmohan Singh and HD Deva Gowda too have been invited.
Around 600 people including ministers and GST officials are expected at the event.
Surprisingly former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan is out of invitee list.