PM Modi 'experiments' for country's betterment: Manjhi on GST rollout

GST launch outcome of India's federal structure under PM Modi's leadership Amit Shah

The RBI report said, "Small businesses may not register; a trader may under-report actual sales; traders may reduce their liability by exaggerating the proportion of lower tax slabs; tax authorities need to guard against traders who collected tax but were not remitted by the government; traders may make false claims for refunds".

"Once we start getting input credit from the freshly purchased raw material, which would happen down the line in two months, then we would have price at the same level as pre-GST days", Singh said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined the council members briefly. The minister said the reports of a businessman being burdened with filing 37 returns in a year under the new tax regime are totally unfounded.

The GST department should not trouble traders, Mungantiwar said.

The integration of the Indian economy into a single entity will improve economic efficiency, it said.

Some opposition parties asked the government to delay implementation of the new system until October because Indian businesses were still recovering from the government's snap decision to remove 86 percent of its currency from circulation overnight on November 8.

Earlier in the day, all shops and business establishments were closed and transport was off roads in Kashmir after traders and transporters called for a shutdown on the GST issue.

Poor implementation would deal a blow to an economy that is still recovering from Modi's decision late a year ago to outlaw 86 percent of the currency in circulation. "The consensus of the Council was to bring the rate down to 5 percent so that the fertilizer prices come down, it doesn't go up", he added.

Businesses are nervous about GST, which sets out four different rates of between five and 28 percent instead of the one originally envisioned. GST, he said, was really a Good and Simple Tax which would just take a little getting used to like every new pair of spectacles.

Most economists agree the reform-first proposed in 2006 - is long overdue, but warn of an initial shock to the economy as businesses adjust. It is similar to the introduction of Value-Added Tax when there was initial resistance.

An end of tax arbitrage under the GST is estimated to save companies $14 billion in reduced logistics costs and efficiency gains.

"Besides, we have also chosen to reduce the tax rate on exclusive parts of tractors from 28 per cent to 18 per cent", he added. Some items like Gold has a different tax rate of 3% and rough diamond has 0.25% rates and mainly loose food items like rice, wheat, milk, egg, salt, chicken, fresh fruits, jaggery, cereals, besan, vegetables, flour, bread, honey, curd, and butter have been exempt from the GST.

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