Though GST rates have been slashed, buyers are yet to get the benefit of the price reduction.A special drive to inspect shops and supermarkets to ensure they abide by the revised GST rates will be hel
KOCHI: The Centre slashed the Goods and Service Tax (GST) rates on 88 consumer goods including sanitary napkins and home appliances on June 21, but buyers in Kerala are yet to get the benefit of the resultant price reduction.
Though the government has instructed manufacturers to revise the MRP on the products, several dealers and shops are still following the old tax structure and retailing on old price, sources said. This has prompted the Legal Metrology Department to launch a drive to inspect shops and supermarkets to ensure they abide by the revised GST rates implemented on July 27.
“The government has exempted sanitary napkins from the GST tax net. We purchased the products at a higher rate and if the companies slash the price suddenly, it may affect our revenue. There should be a system to pass the benefits to the dealers,” said a medical shop owner at Angamaly. Sanitary napkins are still sold at the older rate of Rs 165, a dealer said.
GST officials said dealers should sell consumers goods based on the revised tax structure. They should paste new MRP stickers on the packets so that consumers are able to see the old price tag and the new one. “Dealers should sell the products at the revised GST rate. They cannot sell the products in the old rate as the GST rates have been revised. The Anti-Profiteering cell will initiate action against dealers if consumers submit complaints in this regard,” said an officer from the GST Intelligence.
The 28th GST Council, which met on July 21, decided to revise the tax rate of 88 items. The tax on consumer white goods, was brought down to 18 per cent from earlier 28 per cent.“We are yet to receive feedback from the companies regarding the revision of rates, therefore, we are giving the consumer appliances and sanitary napkins with the MRP printed on the packets that we have stocked,” John Jacob (name changed), a supermarket owner at Thiruvananthapuram.
However, the big dealers like Bismi and Nandilath claim they have implemented rate revision from Thursday.“We are constantly monitoring the supermarkets and stores. We will be launching an inspection soon in Ernakulam to evaluate the revision made by the dealers,” said R Ram Mohan, Deputy Controller, Legal Metrology Department, Central Zone. According to industry experts, consumers are entitled to get a reduction of 7-8 per cent of the total maximum retail price.