When there is a BILL there is a WAY

The dream of having a unified taxation system for indirect taxes was a decade long dream for our motherland India.

GST is not an achievement of a single govt but a result of collective efforts ~Narendra Modi (Speech before GST launching)  

Pic Source: Google

YES! The Goods and Service Tax(GST) came into force from the first day of July 2017. It was indeed a collective effort. Along with this new taxation system, there was also a new mechanism for tracking the transportation of goods either within the state or outside the state called E-Way Bill, which resulted in abolition of state boundary check posts.

As per Rule 138 of GST Rules 2017

Every registered person who causes movement of goods of consignment value exceeding fifty thousand rupees—
(i) in relation to a supply; or
(ii) for reasons other than supply; or
(iii) due to inward supply from an unregistered person,
shall, before commencement of such movement, furnish information relating to the said goods as specified in Part A of FORM GST EWB-01, electronically, on the common portal along with such other information as may be required on the common portal and a unique number will be generated on the said portal. This is just introductory information for E-Way Bill, the rule contains more and more regulations and information. But for the moment this piece of data is sufficient.

 In the previous indirect tax regimes the tax payer has to visit the tax offices whenever there is a commutation of his goods to get a blank ‘Delivery Note’ which will be carried by the truck driver or transporter who have to wait at the state boundary check posts if it was an inter state transportation and had to wait till verification by the officer and then supply the goods and return. This system was much more time consuming and there were a lot of paperwork. So, the digitalization gave an answer to this problem, now the taxpayer can upload about the details of his supply to tax office ‘servers’ which would then provide him what he wanted. WHAT?!! Delivery Notes. This step of the government made it to slowly move towards E-Governance. But there was still a problem, that was- taxpayer has to upload the details for every state separately. Yes, there was no unification of Indirect taxes before GST. That’s why you always heard Modi echoing the lines “ONE NATION ONE TAX“.
So, we were in a need of major reform for unification of Indirect taxes, all state level indirect taxes and central value added taxes were unified and boom!! GST came.

In today’s fast moving digital era, GST is all digitalized. GST is fully online through a common portal of GST, avoiding all paperwork’s coming to the topic of E-Way Bill mechanism- now the taxpayer uploads the details of supply and the details uploaded by a supplier will generate him E-Way Bill number and it will be given to the transporter through the common portal for supply, as all these process happens online there will be a lot of reduction in paper works and there will be no state boundary check posts and no waiting at checkout but then comes the point for inspection and verification, as there are no check posts now, the process of verification is also changed now. Let’s see what the GST Rules provides…,

As per Rule 138A sub-rule(1)

The person in charge of a conveyance shall carry—
(a) the invoice or bill of supply or delivery challan, as the case may be; and
(b) a copy of the e-way bill in physical form or the e-way bill number in electronic
form or mapped to a Radio Frequency Identification Device embedded on to the
conveyance in such manner as may be notified by the Commissioner.

As per Sub-rule(4)

The Commissioner may, by notification, require a class of transporters to obtain a unique Radio Frequency Identification Device and get the said device embedded on to the conveyance and map the e-way bill to the Radio Frequency Identification Device prior to the movement of goods.

As per Rule 138B of GST rules the verification will be done by

  • (1) The Commissioner or an officer
    empowered by him in this behalf may authorize the proper officer to intercept any conveyance to verify the e-way bill in physical or electronic form for all inter-State and intra-State movement of goods.
    (2) The Commissioner shall get Radio Frequency Identification Device readers installed at places where the verification of movement of goods is required to be carried out and verification of movement of vehicles shall be done through such device readers where the e-way bill has been mapped with the said device.
    (3) The physical verification of conveyances shall be carried out by the proper officer as authorised by the Commissioner or an officer empowered by him in this behalf.
    Provided that on receipt of specific information of evasion of tax, physical verification of a specific conveyance can also be carried out by any other officer after obtaining necessary approval of the Commissioner or an officer authorised by him in this behalf.

And if the transporter was intercepted for more than 30 minutes he can upload the necessary information about detention of his vehicle through common portal of GST.

The benefits of this new system doesn’t end here are few “out off the box” benefits,

Environment friendly.
Introduction of E-Way Bill mechanism has reduced the paper works,, it is believed that approximately 50 tons of papers saved everyday!! Damn! 5,000 KGs roughly! A lot of trees are saved. So, E-Way Bill is good for both Economical transactions and ecological balancing. Economy and Ecology goes hand in hand.

•Helps in matching invoices.
Now, the tax officers at border check-post need not to verify all invoices with delivery documents. with the latest update to GST the E-Invoicing system which will be matched through online portal reduces the work of tax officials saving a lot of time for traders. Tax officials are free from matching a lot of invoices.
And for traders also ‘Time’ is nothing less than ‘Money’. Time saved more is Money earned more. Isn’t it?

As Prime Minister Modi said in his speech at launching of GST that
Pic Source: Google

“GST is not just a tax reform, but a step towards economic reform”

  Pic Source: PIB

The GST collections for the month of November 2020 is ₹1,04,963 crores, which 1.4% more in comparison with the data of same month in the previous year 2019, indicating that the economy is back in action. Now the second wave of corona virus fear is rising all I can say is wear masks properly, maintain social distance, be healthy. As the saying goes “Health is Wealth”.

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