While the total collection under GST is stagnating to trending down, the total filing has also not shown any significant improvement
It’s become almost commonplace for vendors across the country to offer an “exemption” from GST for small cash transactions. In other words, as long as he is content with a hand-written “kachcha” receipt, the buyer gets a neat discount to one who insists on a proper bill. (In the case of a good valued at Rs 100, the discount is 15%, because he pays Rs 100 instead of the Rs 118 that includes Rs 18 of GST). As long as such an opt-out exists, bringing the informal sector fully into the tax net will remain a pipe-dream.
Such anomalies and other problems may be the reason the GST collection picture is more subdued than what economic indicators would have led one to expect. Over a period, the GST back end issues along with other technical glitches have been addressed, and the rate structure rationalised. Overall compliance should have improved, but the data suggests otherwise.
While the total collection under GST is stagnating to trending down, the total filing has also not shown any significant improvement.