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RAI clears misinformation on GST rates

Thursday, July 13, 2017
By A Business Reporter

Since the implementation of the Goods & Services Tax (GST) in the country, a lot of information has been circulated about it on social media. As the apex body of retailers, Retailers Association of India (RAI) would like to clarify that not all the content that is being circulated is trustworthy or factual.

A case in point is a forward being circulated that urges people to ask for separate bill for every Rs1000 to save money on GST. As per the forward, the slabs are as follows: 0% GST up to Rs1000; 2.5% GST on spends of Rs 1000 to Rs 15000; 6% on Rs 1500 to Rs2500 and 18% on bill of Rs 2500 to Rs 4,500.

Believing the above information as true, consumers across the country are demanding that retailers split the bill amount in multiple bills for evading tax, resulting in long queues, wastage of paper and unnecessary hassles at billing counters.

To stop the spread of misinformation, RAI would like to clarify that as per GST laws, the above slabs do not exist. The slabs given in GST are based on individual product prices and not on total bill amount. Therefore, getting separate bills at supermarkets and hypermarkets will not help save tax.

As of now, price-based slab rates apply to apparel and footwear categories. E.g. Apparel costing below Rs 1,000 is taxed at 5% and that above Rs 1,000 is subject to 12% GST. Footwear below Rs 500 is to be taxed at 5% while the rest would come in the 18% bracket.

In addition, there is has been lack of clarity on GST rates for restaurants. RAI would like to create awareness about the correct rates applicable. They are as follows:

Restaurants with aggregate turnover of up to Rs 75 lakh - 5%.

Restaurants with no air-conditioning in any part of the premises and that don’t serve liquor – 12%

Restaurant with partial or full air-conditioning or that serving liquor – 18%

Parcelled Cooked food (including that is home delivered) – as applicable to the service type of restaurant in the above mentioned slabs. For instance, food ordered from an air-conditioned restaurant will be taxed at 18% GST; that from non-air-conditioned restaurant at 12%.

If the home delivered food is pre-packaged and pre-cooked Namkeen ordered from a restaurant, it will attract GST of 12%.

When it comes to restaurants, there is no instance which attracts a rate of 28% as is being circulated on social media.

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