'GST boosting Government delivery processes'
FROM A STAFF CORRESPONDENT
SHILLONG, Dec 19: State Planning Secretary BDR Tiwari said that technology like GST has improved the efficiency of the officials manning the various Government departments ebling them to concentrate more on “delivery rather than processes”. He was speaking at a workshop organised by the Press Information Bureau (PIB), Shillong on ‘Vartalap’.
During the technical session, AK Paul, Assistant Commissioner, GST Shillong, informed the participants that the tion-wide e-way bill system will be ready to be rolled out on a trial basis latest by January 16, 2018 for inter-state transportation of goods, to further ease the process of paying tax. For intra-State transportation of goods, there has to be a separate e-way bill system in the different States.
Paul further stated that the overall impact of Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the State of Meghalaya in the past nearly six months has been positive. With the implementation of GST, there has been huge benefit in the cost of transportation of goods between different States that led to reduction of prices of some items, he said. Paul informed the gathering that a total of Rs 266.46 crore were collected after the introduction of GST in Meghalaya as on November 30, 2017
“Due to the abolition of various toll gates following GST, the time taken by a goods-laden truck to travel from Byrnihat in Ri-Bhoi district to New Delhi has been reduced from five to three days,” he added.
Appreciating the response of the trading community in the state, he said, “Traders who have already been in the tax bracket are extremely happy with the easy process of GST whereas those outside its purview are joining the system and gradually coping with it.”
Replying to a question as to whether the GST would help relieve the farmers from paying taxes to the various autonomous district councils (ADCs) for their produces, Paul said the ADCs have Constitutiol mandate to levy tax on certain goods.
Paul also clarified that although there was a reduction of prices of some commodities following implementation of GST, it would be wrong to expect any impact on vegetable prices, which are rising. “There are various other factors responsible for vegetable prices and there is no GST on vegetables, unless they are packed and processed,” he said.
Speaking at the iugural session, BDR Tiwari, Secretary Planning, Government of Meghalaya, lauded the efforts of PIB and said that that such kinds of interactive programmes are very useful in percolating information of government initiatives, programmes and schemes to the grassroots through the media. “All these schemes are made for the welfare of the people but the optimum benefit of these programmes and schemes could not be delivered if the people are not aware of the programmes. Therefore, it is very important that there is information dissemition to the remotest corner of the country,” he added.
He also said, “There has also been a boom in the use of technology in the media industry recently. The media industry is moving away from the traditiol print and audio-visual domition and moving into the digital age ushering in innovative technology, creativity and high-speed communication.”
Tiwari also laid emphasis on building of social infrastructure in the State to achieve the long-term goals for the overall development. Lauding the traditiol systems of Meghalaya, he said these time-tested mechanisms have facilitated smooth implementation various government schemes in the State
Superintendent of Taxes, Circle 2, Shillong, Mang Pariat, in his presentation said that the introduction of GST has resulted in decrease in inflation, ease of doing business and decrease in ‘Black’ transactions. He also gave an overview of business processes under GST in Meghalaya.
Their presentation was followed by an interactive session where the resource persons were able to clear many of the queries raised by the jourlists. The workshop was also attended by Daniel Ingti, Director of tural Resource Magement wing of Meghalaya Basin Development Authority (MBDA) and J Gangte, Head of Office, North Eastern Service, AIR Shillong.