The GST Council seems all set to rollout the electronic-way bill under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime. The all-powerful council chaired by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will reportedly take a call on early implementation of e-way bill, along with ways to check tax evasion when it convenes on Saturday through video conferencing.
In the 22nd monthly GST Council meeting, Arun Jaitley had declared that the e-way bill be introduced across India in a staggered manner from January 1, 2018 and the document will be made compulsory by April 1 next year. The need to review the rollout schedule of e-way bill emerges from the decline in GST revenue for October, which fell by Rs 12,000 in comparison to the preceding month. Government earned Rs 83,346 crore from GST in October, the lowest since the GST rollout on July 1, whereas the tax collection figures for September were Rs 95,131 crore.
Moreover, Arun Jaitley had said yesterday that the GST Council has prepared schedule with regard to e-way bill to check tax evasion. "I think Council has already taken decision with regard to time schedule, with regard to e-way bill itself. That will help in enhancing collection," he had said.
An e-way bill is required for movement of goods worth more than Rs 50,000. Under the GST regime, transporters will have to procure e-way bill from the GST Network portal when hauling goods worth more than Rs 50,000, within or outside a state. Provisions regarding the e-way bill were finalised in August earlier this year. The objective is to streamline movement of goods across and inside state borders and keep track of inter- and intra-state goods transport for taxation purposes.
To generate an e-way bill, the supplier and transporter will have to enter details of the haul in the GSTN portal. This will create an unique e-way bill number which will be sent to the supplier, transporter and the receiver. The e-way bill thus generated will be valid for a period of 15 days, with one day of travelling for 100 km and 15 days for more than 1,000 km transit.
Invoice matching is also another issue that reportedly might feature prominently in the agenda for GST Council meeting tomorrow. Devised under the GST regime, invoice matching is meant to check tax evasion by matching all taxable supplies against the received supplies. The practice was put on hold in the earlier days of GST to make compliance easier.