India marks GST Day on 1 July to celebrate the anniversary of the rollout of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The indirect tax regime was initiated in 2017 by the Centre.
The day celebrates the multi-stage indirect, consumption-based taxation system which was introduced to subsume various domestic indirect taxes like service tax, value added tax, purchase tax etc., under one umbrella. The tax is valid on most goods and services, with petroleum and liquor being among the notable exceptions.
GST Day is celebrated on 1 July as the rollout was done in a grand ceremony at Parliament’s Central Hall on the midnight of 30 June, 2017.
According to the GST website, the decision to introduce the tax system was first laid down in the 2006 Budget speech by then Finance Minister P Chidambaram. While 1 April 2010 was initially decided as the date for rolling out GST, the implementation was delayed for several years due to negotiations between the Union government and states regarding certain clauses.
The tax system was finally passed by both the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha in 2016 and enacted as the 101st Constitution Amendment Act, 2016. To ensure smooth rollout of the taxation system, a GST Council comprising of the Union Finance Minister, the Minister of State (Revenue) as well as the State Finance Ministers was also formed. The GSTC met for its 47th Council meeting on 28-29 June. In the meet, the council discussed matters regarding compensation to states and imposition of GST on casinos and online gaming.
GST streamlined the country’s indirect taxation system. It also created uniformity of tax rates and removed the cascading tax effect. The tax also improved the compliance procedures for businesses. It created a more transparent system of taxation in the country.
As per data by the Centre, GST revenue collected in May 2022 was Rs 1,40,885 crore. This marks the fourth time that GST revenues crossed the Rs 1.4 lakh crore-mark since the tax system was started.