In Budget, 2015, a provision was made for levying a Swachh Bharat Cess on all or any of the services, for the purposes of financing and promoting Swachh Bharat initiatives or for any other purpose relating thereto.
We are a country of more than 120 crore people. For such a vast and populous country we do have our fair share of cleanliness concerns. In fact, persons entrusted with the job of keeping our country clean, struggle constantly. Ceanliness also has huge impact on public health. Dirty surrocundings also cause many diseases, like, malaria, dengue, diarrhea, jaundice, cholera etc., with associated high public health expenditure. According to the Government of India estimates, expenditure on health adds up to Rs.6,700 crore annually (approximately Rs.60 per capita). Increased allocation for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan can prevent many of these diseases with consequential benefit to one and all.
Study by American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene reveals that between 2006 and 2012, India reported an annual average of 20,474 dengue cases, with direct medical cost of about Rs.3500 crore per annum.
Swachh Bharat Cess is not another tax but a step towards involving each and every citizen in making contribution to Swachh Bharat. In this direction, the Government has decided to impose, with effect from 15th November 2015, a Swachh Brarat Cess at the rate of 0.5% on all services, which are presently liable to service tax. This will translate into a tax of 50 paisa only on every one hundred rupees worth of taxable services. The proceeds from this cess will be exclusively used for Swachh Bharat initiatives.
RELATED NOTIFICATION IS AS FOLLOWS
GOVERNMENT OF INDIA
MINISTRY OF FINANCE
(DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE)
New Delhi, the 6th November, 2015
Notification No. 22/2015-Service Tax
G.S.R. 843(E).- In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 93 of the Finance Act, 1994 (32 of 1994) read with sub-section (5) of section 119 of the Finance Act, 2015 (20 of 2015), the Central Government, being satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest so to do, hereby exempts all taxable services from payment of such amount of the Swachh Bharat Cess leviable under sub-section (2) of section 119 of the said Act, which is in excess of Swachh Bharat Cess calculated at the rate of 0.5 percent. of the value of taxable services:
Provided that Swachh Bharat Cess shall not be leviable on services which are exempt from service tax by a notification issued under sub-section (1) of section 93 of the Finance Act, 1994 or otherwise not leviable to service tax under section 66B of the Finance Act, 1994.
This notification shall come into force from the 15th day of November, 2015.
[F.No. 354/129/2015 – TRU]
Under Secretary to the Government of India