The GST Council on 11 June 2017 reduced the GST Rates of 66 items including insulin, pickles, printers, agarbattis, school bags, and cashew nuts.
However, the GST rates for telecom services, marbles, granite and spectacles were retained. The GST Council, headed by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, went beyond the equalisation principle of maintaining the current tax incidence in certain cases.
All goods and services, under the GST regime, are broadly placed in five tax slabs — 0, 5, 12, 18, and 28 per cent.
Revised GST Rates of few Goods and Services
• The GST Rates on insulin, cashew nuts and agarbattis were lowered to 5 per cent from 12 per cent proposed earlier.
• The GST Rates of school bags and computer printers will now be 18 per cent rate against 28 per cent decided earlier.
• The rate of children's exercise books was fixed to Nil from 12 per cent proposed earlier.
• The GST rate for movie tickets under Rs 100 was reduced to 18 per cent, while tickets priced above Rs 100 will be taxed at 28 per cent.
• Kitchen use items like pickles, mustard sauce, and morabba will attract 12 per cent GST as against 18 per cent proposed earlier.
• Packaged food items like ketchup, toppings, instant food mixes will be charged 12 per cent GST now.
• Cutlery, tractors and CCTV cameras will cost less now as their tax is now fixed at 12 per cent.
Revision of Composition Scheme For Small Businesses
Apart from the revising the rates, the GST Council also reworked the Composition Scheme For Small Businesses for the benefit of small traders, manufacturers, and restaurateurs. Now the small traders with an annual turnover of Rs 75 lakh, can avoid any compliance burden and simply pay tax.
Those whose annual turnover was less than 20 lakhs, will not be required to pay any tax now. Moreover, they will now have reduced procedural requirements.
The composition scheme is a presumptive taxation scheme allowing small traders, manufacturers and restaurants to pay a 1 to 5 per cent GST rate on sales without tax credits.