A way bill is a document prepared by the carrier of a shipment of goods that contains details of the shipment, route, and charges and an e-way bill is an electronically generated bill or document which is required to be generated for the movement of goods of more than Rs 50,000 from one place to another. This document is required to be generated online for transportation of goods irrespective of whether such transportation is inter-state or intra-state.
The E-way bill under the GST regime replaces the Way Bill which was required under the VAT Regime for the movement of goods. The way bill under the VAT regime was a physical document which was required to be generated for the movement of goods. The physical document under the VAT regime has now been replaced with an electronically generated document in the GST regime.
A ‘movement’ of goods of more than Rs 50,000 in value cannot be made by a registered person without an e-way bill.
E-way bill will also be allowed to be generated or cancelled through SMS.
When an e-way bill is generated a unique e-way bill number (EBN) is allocated and is available to the supplier, recipient, and the transporter.
The e-way bill under the GST regime is required to be generated by-
1. Every registered person who causes movement of goods of consignment
a. In relation to supply (Eg. Sales)
b. For reasons other than supply (eg sales return, branch transfer etc) or
c. Due to inward supply from an unregistered person.
2. Every unregistered person who causes movement of goods.
For this purpose, a supply may be either of the following:
In simpler terms, the term ‘supply’ usually means a:
1. Sale – sale of goods and payment made
2. Transfer – branch transfers for instance
3. Barter/Exchange – where the payment is by goods instead of in money
Therefore, e-way bills must be generated on the common portal for all these types of movements.
E-Way Bill in case of movement by registered person
In case the movement is caused by the registered person as a consignor (i.e seller) or the recipient of supply as consignee (i.e buyer), whether in his own conveyance or hired one or by railways or by air or vessel, the registered person or the recipient may generate the e-way bill in Form GST EWB 01 electronically on the common portal after furnishing information in Part B of Form GST EWB 01.
In case the movement of goods is caused by the registered person and handed over to the transporter for transportation by road, but the e-way bill has not been generated- it would be the responsibility of the transporter to generate the e-way bill.
The registered person shall first furnish the information relating to the transporter in Part B of Form GST EWB 01 on www.gst.gov.in portal and then the e-way bill shall be generated by the transporter on the basis of the information furnished by the registered person in Part A GST EQB 01.
E-Way Bill in case of movement by unregistered person
If the goods are supplied by an unregistered person to a registered person and the registered person is known at the time of commencement of movement of goods, it would be deemed that the movement of goods is caused by the registered person. In such a case , the registered person or the transporter shall complete the formalities of the e-way bill.
Intimation of generation of E-Way Bill
Situations where E-Way Bill is not required to be generated
It is to be noted that if a transporter is transporting multiple consignments in a single conveyance, they can use the form GST EWB-02 to produce a consolidated e-way bill, by providing the e-way bill numbers of each consignment. If both the consignor and the consignee have not created an e-way bill, then the transporter can do so by filing out PART A of Form GST EWB- 01 on the basis of the invoice/bill of supply/ delivery challan given to them.
Items Exempted from Listing under GST E-Way Bill
The central government has recently announced a list of particulars which are totally exempted from the e-way bill provision under the GST. These items are considered as common use items and are exempted from the necessity of having an electronic permit for the transportation under the GST scheme.
According to the goods and services tax, it is mandatory to have a permit i.e. E-way bill for transportation of consignment with Value more than 50000 in order to check tax evasion practices. But in a recent GST Council meeting on August 5, it was announced a list of 153 products which are totally exempted to be requiring any sort of e-way bill while transportation.
The list which is exempted from the e waybill includes some of the items like:
The information provided in Part A of the Form GST EWB-01 can be used for preparing GSTR-1.
An e-way bill is valid for periods as listed below, which is based on the distance travelled by the goods. Validity is calculated from the date and time of generation of e-way bill-
|Distance||Valid from||Valid for|
|Up to 100km||Date & time at which e-way bill is generated||1 day|
|For every 100 km after that||Date & time at which e-way bill is generated||An extra day|
Decision of GST Council : Inter State E-way Bill to be made compulsory from 1st of February, 2018, system to be ready by 16th of January, 2018
The 24th meeting of the GST Council held on 16/12/2017 through a video conferencing. It discussed about the implementation of E-way Bill system in the country. Till such time as National E-way Bill is ready, the states were authorised to continue their own separate E-way bill systems. However, it was represented by the trade and transporters that this is causing undue hardship in inter-state movement of goods and therefore , bringing in an early all India system of e-way bill has become a necessity. The GST Council reviewed the progress of readiness of hardware and software required for the introduction of nationwide e-way bill system. After discussion with all the states, the following discussions are taken:-
Conclusion: The e-way bill may create a digital hurdle for the government as the e-way bill according to the provisions mandates to originate the bill on each supply and transportation of products above the value of RS 50,000. This provision concludes that there will be enormous online bill production every day which might block the servers as it did previously on the occasion of filing returns. Therefore, many opinions are directing are towards a safe bet in order to maintain the equilibrium whenever the bill gets introduced.
Author: ACS Suman Gupta.
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