By Swaminathan B
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has launched a mobile app called GST Rates Finder, which has been built to help users find out GST rates for various goods and services. The app, available on the Android platform, can be downloaded on any smartphone. Once downloaded, the app will be working without the internet as well.
“The user can determine the GST rate for a good or service by entering the name or the chapter heading of the commodity or service,” the finance ministry said in a statement. “The search result will list all the goods and services containing the name which is typed in the search box,” added the statement.
How to Use The App:
To download the GST Rates Finder app, one has to download the GST Finder from Google Play Store on the mobile phone or Android tablet.
Search results on the GST Rates Finder app will list all the goods and services containing the name which was typed in the search box. The user can scroll down the list of description and when any specific item on the list is clicked, the display window will pop-up, containing details such as GST rate, description of goods or services and the chapter heading of the Harmonised System of Nomenclature (HSN). For example, any person who has been billed by a hotel or a restaurant or for footwear can cross verify the correctness of the rate of GST charged.
The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) has also provided a GST rate finder on its portal cbec-gst.gov.in to help the taxpayers know the applicable GST rate on their supplies of goods and services. A taxpayer can search for applicable Central GST, State GST, Union Territory GST rate and Compensation Cess on a supply. The search can be made based on the description of goods or services or HSN chapter or section or heading number.
“These initiatives are aimed to serve as a ready reckoner on GST rates. This will empower not only the taxpayers but every citizen of the nation, to ascertain the correct GST rate on goods and services,” the statement said.
The GST provision, requiring any good more than Rs 50,000 in value to be pre-registered online before it can be moved, is likely to kick in from October after a centralised software platform is ready, a top official said.
The provision, called the e-way bill, would be implemented after infrastructure for smooth generation of registration and its verification through hand-held devices with tax officials is ready.
The information technology platform for the e-way bill system is being developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) along with GST-Network — the company which has developed the IT backbone for the new indirect tax regime.
The Centre has also decided to relax the timeline provision under which the e-way bill generated by GSTN for 20 days for goods travelling more than 1,000 km. Earlier, this was 15 days.
As per the provision, GSTN would generate e-way bills that will be valid for 1-20 days, depending on distance to be travelled — one day for 100 km, 3 days (100 to less than 300 km), 5 days (300-less than 500 km) and 10 days (500-less than 1,000 km).