The fifth anniversary of the grand rollout of our goods and services tax (GST) will be celebrated on 1 July, 2022. The legislation’s passage in Parliament, ushering in the GST era, was made historic with a special midnight session five years ago. It was a biggest tax reform after independence.

Just recall, On 15th August 1947, as clock struck 12 in midnight, Indian Independence was declared. The rule of British Raj ended and soon the democratic wave in India was seen.

Today, GST will flourish its wings in this democratic nation. Settling down fast and giving booster to country as fasted growing economy in world. Earlier tax regime (Excise duty) was drafted by British Government in 1944 by concentrating revenue collection. Not given much attention to Indian traditional trade & business, no ease of doing business etc.

GST law has been drafted by Indian, it has its own flavor. Many trades and industries have confirmed that under GST regime they are enjoying ease of doing business and Govt also realized increasing trend in revenue collection.

Still, it requires further fine tuning to make GST regime more familiar to our trade and culture. In this context, I would invite your attention to Section 132 of Goods and Service Tax Act, 2017. Section describes punishment amount in hundred lakh which is not in consistent with Indian numerical system. Let’s review relevant extract of Section 132 for Punishment for certain offences just understand issue.

 Quote

“Section 132:  Punishment for certain offences. –

(1) 1[Whoever commits, or causes to commit and retain the benefits arising out of, any of the following offences], namely: –

(a)………

(b)……..

(k)……

(l) attempts to commit, or abets the commission of any of the offences mentioned in clauses (a) to (k) of this section, shall be punishable-

(i) in cases where the amount of tax evaded or the amount of input tax credit wrongly availed or utilised or the amount of refund wrongly taken exceeds five hundred lakh rupees, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years and with fine;

(ii) in cases where the amount of tax evaded or the amount of input tax credit wrongly availed or utilised or the amount of refund wrongly taken exceeds two hundred lakh rupees but does not exceed five hundred lakh rupees, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with fine;

(iii) in the case of any other offence where the amount of tax evaded or the amount of input tax credit wrongly availed or utilised or the amount of refund wrongly taken exceeds one hundred lakh rupees but does not exceed two hundred lakh rupees, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year and with fine;

(iv) in cases where he commits or abets the commission of an offence specified in clause (f) or clause (g) or clause (j), he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months or with fine or with both.

(2) Where any person convicted of an offence under this section is again convicted of an offence under this section, then, he shall be punishable for the second and for every subsequent offence with imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years and with fine.

(3) The imprisonment referred to in clauses (i), (ii) and (iii) of sub-section (1) and sub-section (2) shall, in the absence of special and adequate reasons to the contrary to be recorded in the judgment of the Court, be for a term not less than six months.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, all offences under this Act, except the offences referred to in sub-section (5) shall be non- cognizable and bailable.

(5) The offences specified in clause (a) or clause (b) or clause (c) or clause (d) of sub-section (1) and punishable under clause (i) of that sub-section shall be cognizable and non-bailable. 

(6) A person shall not be prosecuted for any offence under this section except with the previous sanction of the Commissioner.”

Unquote

Let us review our traditional Indian numeral system which contains numerals that are used to represent the numbers using a set of symbols. we count with ones, tens, hundreds, thousands, ten thousand, lakhs, ten lakhs, crores and so on.

International system has different place value names for a certain position of a digit in a number. For example, the number 10,000,000 is read as 10 million in words in the international system, whereas, it is read as 1 crore in the Indian place value system. The place values in the international system are Ones, Tens, Hundreds, Thousands, Ten Thousand, Hundred Thousand, Millions, and so on.

Lakhs and crores are Indians units in the Indian Numeral system where as millions and billions are international units in the International Numeral system. Common businessmen find inconvenient to understand amount in one hundred lakh or five hundred lakhs etc.

In view of 5th Anniversary of GST regime lets have uniform Indian number system in GST regime to describe the amount.

Author Bio

Qualification: LL.B / Advocate
Company: JAWALKAR & ASSOCIATE
Location: CHINCHWAD MIDC PUNE, Maharashtra, India
Member Since: 15 Dec 2019 | Total Posts: 3
A practicing lawyer with more than 25 years of corporate work experience in the field of indirect taxation. Member of All India Federation of Tax Practitioner, Western Maharashtra Tax Practitioners association, and member of Indirect tax panel of Chamber of Commerce and industries. View Full Profile

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4 Comments

  1. Mayur digambar patankar says:

    This article is very helpful to me
    Very well written
    Thank u for sharing this article to make Me very helpful to identify the taxation related doubts
    whatever contents you add in this article this contents is encourage to our new generation young people
    I am follow your guidance related to your article
    You are motivating me by reading this article
    I have also read your past 2 article

  2. Aviraj Rajdhar Ambekar says:

    Thanks for the sharing this helpful information about Taxation, and this really helpful for new generation. I hope you wil share like this kind of information.

  3. Sayali Bhavsar says:

    Very well written, It is really easy to remember the amount of penalty according to Indian numerical system.
    Thankyou Sir

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