September 1, 2017
Its exactly two months since Goods and Services Tax (GST) came into force in the country. Though all the hype surrounding it has come down, confusion still prevails at the ground level.
Under GST there is only a single tax for products and the tax is collected at the destination or at point of consumption unlike earlier times where tax was collected at point of production. GST also requires tax payers to follow various new procedures like filing bills online and also filing tax returns every month.
Though the Central Government and business organisations conducted training workshops and opened seva centres to help tax payers to get their doubts cleared, many small time business people and accountants are still confused about the procedure to file GST.
Vedha Vikas who runs a shop that sells pooja items in the city, says he had a tough time in the beginning while filing. “The first few days were very difficult. We have four different tax rates; 5 per cent, 12 per cent, 18 per cent and 28 per cent. Since the number of products we are handling is less, it became easy for us while calculating,” he said.
An accountant with the construction industry says the industry has been finding it difficult in recent times.
“Earlier we were just mentioning as concrete items. But now we have to mention each and every element and bill separately,” he said.
According to T.S. Maniam, a charted accountant, there was still lack of clarity, especially among the business people. “Though the Government introduced GST (theoretically) much before July 1, an introduction to the GST network and software at least 3 months prior to introduction would have helped. We could have used dummy data and developed a better understanding on how GST works. There is no complete software solution available in the market for GST,” he said.