Let GST Not Become the Tower of Babel

 Let GST Not Become the Tower of Babel

While tweakings are mandatory(अनिवार्य) to bring(ले आना) things to perfection(पूर्णता), it’s wise to recall(याद रखना) that somewhere down the line, building the Tower of Babel had become a ‘perpetual(लगातार) incremental(वृद्धिशील ) project(परियोजना )’.

One sincerely(ईमानदारी से/निष्ठा ) hopes that the government’s 46 amendments(संशोधन/सुधार) to the goods and services tax (GST) laws don’t turn it into a ‘Babelous’ construction. The tweaks include letting employers claim credit for the taxes paid on food, transport and insurance given to employees under any law, allowing taxpayers to amend their returns, letting only e-commerce operators who need to collect tax to register under GST, and bringing more small taxpayers under the ‘composition(रचना/समझौता) scheme’.

All these are meant(इरादा रखना/ध्यान में रखना) to the ease the compliance(अनुपालन/सम्मति ) burden(बोझ/भार). That’s very nice. But frequent(बारंबार/अधिक) changes can also muddle the tax system. The whole purpose of shifting to GST was to cut out the cascade of multiple taxes that products bear. GST subsumes all taxes and allows producers to claim credit for all the taxes paid on inputs across the value chain.

The point is to make production(उत्पादन) efficient(कार्य-कुशल/योग्य), and create audit trails to curb(रोकथाम ) evasion(चोरी/छल). This brings down output costs, and producers must pass on the benefit of lower costs to consumers.

This also means retail prices must come down for all commodities( वस्तुओं ) and services with GST. However, if the consumer has to pay a higher price now, compared(तुलना करना) to the pre-GST regime, it defeats GST’s very purpose. It will also jack up costs for companies. This is Economics 101.

GoI must work towards not just simplifying(सरलीकृत ) procedures(प्रक्रियाओं) but also towards lowering(दरों को कम करना ) and converging rates(एकत्र करना), and bringing large swathes of the informal sector under the GST net. This will create a built-in(अंतर्निहित /निर्माण) incentive(प्रोत्साहन) to pay tax. Exemptions should be binned — they break the GST chain and raise the scope of evasion. Filing should also be made simple for businesses to claim input tax credit.

Industry is apparently(जाहिरा तौर पर/प्रत्यक्ष स्पष्ट रूप से) miffed over GoI’s refusal to give in to its demand to provide the old transitional(संक्रमणकालीन ) credit for cess(कर/टैक्स)). The tax collection at source for e-commerce, ostensibly to create audit trails, is irrational(तर्कहीन/अज्ञानी). GST must be truly be a simple and fair tax, not a babble or Babel.


Importanat Vocabulary

Synonyms: additional, additive, cumulative, incremental

Synonyms: commonplace, constant, continual, incessant, intermittent
Antonyms: broken, ceasing, ending, inconstant, infrequent

Synonyms: able, active, adequate, capable, competent
Antonyms: delicate, fragile, idle, impotent, inactive

4.Curb(रोकथाम )
Synonyms: barrier, ledge, rein, restraint, restriction
Antonyms: freedom, center, encouragement, inside, interior

Synonyms: dodging, artifice, circumvention, cunning, ditch
Antonyms: directness, frankness, honesty, openness, reality

Synonyms: aberrant, absurd, crazy, foolish, incoherent
Antonyms: balanced, logical, rational, realistic, reasonable

Synonyms: ceaseless, constant, continued, continuous, endless
Antonyms: bounded, ceasing, changeable, changing, completed

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