Cool title, but what’s the news?

Things are going to get simpler for you soon enough. The finance ministry is thinking of simplifying the GST complaint form. The consumers have to fill this to submit their complaints against businesses that are indulging in profiteering post GST rollout. The ministry has decided to make the form more consumer-friendly and easily understandable. This could come about as a relief to those who had to go through the complicated and the dreary process of filling in the form.

? Okay, so what does it mean? 

The consumer has the right to file a complaint against any business, if they do not operate according to the rules made for the implementation of GST. Till now, as many as 170 complaints have been filed in front of the the standing committee and the screening committee by consumers against businesses. The reason being not passing on benefits of tax rate reduction since the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) from July 1.

The profiteering complaint form, though a single page document, has about 44 columns wanting quite a number of details and half of these fields are compulsory. The move to simplify the form comes after the standing committee received numerous representations red flagging the complicated nature of the form.

? I get it, now tell me why should I care?

The bigger picture : 

They know that a simplified form is on the anvil so that even a common person can apply without needing any accountant.  In the existing form, the consumer has to mention the actual price or value charged per unit before GST and the same after GST. Also, the total tax per unit and the decrement in tax amount post GST has to be filled up by the complainant. Details of pre-GST rates of excise duty, VAT, service tax, luxury tax charged by the businesses against whom the profiteering complaint is being lodged too have to be filled up. Self-attested copies of all documentary evidence like proof of identity, price list, invoice and detailed working sheet need to be attached along with the form.

For you personally: 

Finding out these minute details is not easy for a common man and requires a tedious procedure. Hence, the Government has decided to make this process simpler.

“As per the structure of the anti-profiteering mechanism in the GST regime, complaints of local nature will be first sent to the state-level screening committee while those of national level will be marked for the Standing Committee.”

If the complaints have worthiness, the respective committees would refer the cases for further investigation to the Directorate General of Safeguards (DGS). If not, no further action would be taken. The DGS would then consider the case and study the complaint. Once DGS submits its report, it would be scrutinised by the Anti-Profiteering Authority for further action. It may include fine and extreme penalty like cancellation of registration. 

Source: Money Control

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