India stands still at the brink of its great Tax Reform, silently trying to embrace the new GST in uncertainty. As the big day looms over, confusion reigns and anxieties mount among everyone – the GST implementation pretty much like an Indian wedding, to be honest.
We are just a couple of days away from one of the most momentous taxation reforms the country has ever seen – the launch of new indirect tax-regime which intends to knit the entire country’s economy together under single tax format. The new Gst Regime will scrape down the tangle of state-wide tax levies and turn the whole country into a single market for the first time. If everything works out smoothly and as planned, this will transform the country’s way of trading and business, slashing down all the red tapes of present market.
But it is not going to be a merry picture, not at least initially because the scale of changes needed for implementation of GST reform are daunting. The new GST regime might be beneficial to the large-scale industry sector but it has hit the small-scale business hard because the existing systems allows them to maintain big, dusty ledgers and receipts, and all the paraphernalia of 19th-century accounting but GST will be entirely online! They are spending the hard-earned cash over hardware and software that they are not even certain about. People in the small offices are paying out their precious productive time to learn buggy tax software for the first time in their lives. All this is a major hitch about the new GST, which we or even the creator of the idea himself, is not sure about.
From a chewing gum to a private jet aircraft, each and every possible commodity has been boiled down into six categories – the 0%, 5%, 12%, 18% and 28% GST. As per the PM’s ‘plans’ the GST could by the catalyst which will finally unleash the country’s potential. From July 1, the overnight stroke will prove to be a tryst with destination tax – GST sounds great, at least on papers. But is India ready for the huge economic jolt, all over again so soon? Or will it shake the face of Indian business, rattling it to the core so much that it will quiver Modi’s political acclaim?