Dr. Amit Mitra
Finance, Excise, Commerce & Industries
and PE & IR Departments
Government of West Bengal
Chairman, Empowered Committee
of State Finance Ministers
D.O. No. 290/FM/2016 Dated, the 28th October, 2016
Dear Shri Jaitley,
Kindly recall that as a follow up to the 3rd GST Council Meeting, the States were to receive updated database on tax payers under VAT, Central Excise and Service Tax.
My officers have shown me the data sent by the council secretariat, which has taken me by surprise, as it only contains the aggregate data of total tax payers and not the required disaggregated data .
The data appears to have been updated till January 19, 2016, but does not contain any details which are absolutely necessary to make any analysis, like number of dealers below the threshold of Rs.20 lakh and below a turnover of Rs.1.5 crore. These details are required for both goods and services at a national level to understand the distribution of dealers and thus facilitate in taking decision on the workload distribution under GST between the Centre and States.
I am also surprised at the data provided with regard to total taxpayer base in services. The minutes of the 1st and 2nd GST Council meeting clearly records a tax base of around 11 lakhs for service tax payers. When we referred to the report on dual control of the Empowered Committee of 2014, the service tax base mentioned was around 9 lakhs.
Suddenly, we find that the Service tax payers number has escalated to 30.5 lakhs out of which 26.41 lakhs are shown as active taxpayers. This implies that the service tax base has grown 3 times over 2 years! What is even more surprising is that even a month ago this fact was not told to the States. Unfortunately, these figures which are very different from the earlier figures, appear to be an after-thought, surfacing only after the issue of dual control was discussed in the last GST Council meeting on 18th -19th October, 2016.
I have been informed that the final updated data will be available only on 1st November,2016 . This will leave just a day for the States to analyse before the next meeting.
I would request you to kindly instruct the GST secretariat to immediately send all the relevant data to the States for a meaningful and informed discussion in the forthcoming meeting of the Council on the 3rd 86 4th of November, 2016.
(Dr. Amit Mitra)
Shri Arun Jaitley
Hon’ble Union Finance 86 Corporate Affairs Minister India
134, North Block
New Delhi – 1 1 0 0 0 1