The rejig of tax slabs under Goods and Services Tax (GST) is reportedly benefiting business firms and corporate, but not the consumers. On several occasions, the Centre slashed GST rate on several commodities, but consumers continue to purchase the items at previous tax rates only, observe the market analysts.
For instance, in a latest incident, National Anti-Profiteering Authority (NAA) held that Samsonite denied the benefit of reduction of GST to its consumers. It’s observed that it was in contravention of Section 171 of Central Goods and Service Tax (CGST), 2017. An applicant filed an application before the Standing Committee on Anti-profiteering, under Rule 128 (1) of the CGST Rules- 2017, alleging profiteering by the respondent in respect of ‘American Tourister Sky Tracer HL Blue 68 cm Hard Trolley,’ which was being supplied by the Respondent. The applicant alleged that the company concerned did not reduce the selling price of the above product. The applicant elaborated that the GST rate was reduced from 28 per cent to 18 per cent vide Notification Central Tax (Rate) dated November 14, 2017. However, the company had kept the MRP of the above product unchanged at Rs9,100 and thus, the benefit of reduction in the GST rate was not passed on to the recipients by way of commensurate reduction in its price.
The DGAP has also ruled that the Respondent has failed to furnish proof of satisfaction of the conditions mentioned in Section 15 (3)(b). It’s further observed that the discounts offered via credit notes were not liable to be excluded from the value. So, the benefit of discounts could not be given to the respondent.
NAA chairman BN Sharma and technical members JC Chauhan and Amand Shah held that Samsonite has denied the benefit of reduction of Goods and Service Tax (GST) to its consumers, in contravention of Section 171 of Central Goods and Service Tax (CGST), 2017. NAA had ruled that the respondent had committed an offense under Section 171 (3A) of the CGST Act, 2017. “Therefore, the respondent is apparently liable for imposition of penalty under the provisions of the above Section. Accordingly, a Show Cause Notice be issued to him directing him to explain why the penalty prescribed under Section 171 (3A) of the above Act read with Rule 133 (3) d) of the CGST Rules, 2017 should not be imposed on him,” the authority said.
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