GST (Goods and Services Tax) is a single indirect tax aimed at making the country a unified common market. It is imposed on the supply of goods and/or services within India. Multiple indirect taxes that the Central Government or State Governments impose on suppliers and consumers are subsumed by GST.
The taxes levied and collected by the Centre until 1 July, 2017, that are subsumed by GST include Central Excise duty, Duties of Excise (medicinal and toilet preparations), Additional Duties of Excise (goods of special importance), Additional Duties of Excise (textile and textile products), Additional Duties of Customs, Special Additional Duties of Customs, Service Tax, and Central surcharges and cesses. The State taxes subsumed under GST include State VAT, Entry Tax, Central Sales Tax, Entertainment and Amusement Tax, Luxury Tax, Purchase Tax, Taxes on advertisements, Taxes on gambling, betting and lotteries, and State surcharges and cesses relating to the supply of commodities and services.
Implementation of GST
The implementation of GST by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is considered a historical move, considering the fact that it significantly reformed indirect tax in India. The consolidation of several different taxes into one is forecast to help the country move forward by eliminating the cascading of taxes. The reform is also set to pave the way for a common national market, thereby making Indian commodities and services increasingly competitive in both local as well as global markets.