- The GST e-way bill system has been recently rolled out all over India as part of anti-tax evasion measures under the new tax regime.
1st April, 2018:
- The group of minister (GoM) formed to oversee the implementation of the Good and Services Tax (GST) implemented the e-way bill for inter-state movement of goods all over India.
- An electronic documentation.
- Document contains details about movement of goods.
- Can be generated from the Good and Services Tax Network (GSTN).
- 25-50 lakh e-way bills to be generated every day, and that may even go up to 75 lakh per day.
Key notes about E-way bill:
- Mandatory from 1st April, 2018 for all inter-state transport of good.
- Consignment should exceed Rs50, 000 in value.
- Compulsory for the moving goods within a state in a phased manner from 15th April, 2018.
- Its validity varies depending on the distance that the goods have to travel.
- Some goods that are out of the e-way bill’s ambit include perishable items such as meat, milk and milk products and fruits and vegetables.
- Other items that don’t need an e-way bill are gold and silver jewellery, cooking gas cylinders, raw silk, wool and handlooms.
- Goods will be inspected only once during the journey except in cases where specific information on tax evasion is received.
Significance of e-way bill:
- Key anti-tax evasion measure,
- Crucial part of the GST architecture,
- Provide a boost to GST revenues,
- Dissuade tax evaders from underreporting transactions, and
- Check instances where the entire transaction is not recorded due to connivance between the seller and buyer.
Concerns rose over e-way bill:
- May cause a disruption to trade,
- Technology system may not be prepared to handle the huge e-way bill volume,
- Long delays in generation of GST e-way bills,
- Trade may come to a standstill,
- Potential scope for harassment by tax authorities,
- Inadequate knowledge about the process of e-way bill among vehicle drivers, and
- Taxmen have powers to stop trucks and check e-way bills which may lead to rent-seeking.
- Anti-evasion officers need to be deployed,
- Limit the frequency of inspections for goods moving across States, and
- Educate the general mass with e-way bill and its underpinnings.