On Saturday, the GST (Goods and Services Tax) council announced a reduction of tax rates on 88 items, like footwear, fridge, washing machine and TVs. On popular demand, Sanitary pads will have 0% (Zero percent) GST on them. Many items used in day to day life especially by the ‘Middle Class’, such as perfumes, cosmetics and personal care products, hair dryers, shavers, juicer mixer grinders, vacuum cleaners, lithium ion batteries, have GST on them ‘slashed’.
Finance Minister Piyush Goyal announced, “Every state wanted that the rates on these items be lowered so that the middle income households are benefited … It has also been decided that the GST Council will rise above revenue consideration and focus more on job creation and economic growth.” The new rates will be applicable from the 27th of July. Piyush Goyal is being lauded for this decision, from all quarters.
Sanitary pads, Rakhis without jewellery i.e. gold or silver, Marble stone or wooden statues of Hindu Gods and Goddesses, Broomsticks and material used in making them, Milk fortified with vitamins, Sal leaves used for making plates, Coir pith used for making compost, Coins issued on special occasions and in circulation will now have 0% (Zero percent) GST on them. These items were earlier in various tax brackets, but will now have no tax on them.
Paints, Electronic Iron (Press), Li-ion Batteries, Storage Water Geysers, Water Coolers, Electric Shavers and Hair Dryers, Juicer Mixer Grinders, Trailers and Semi-Trailers for carriage of goods, Vacuum Cleaners, Video Games, Televisions upto 68 centimeters, Fridges and Freezers, and Washing machines will now be taxed at 18% instead of 28% – a reduction of 10%. As most of these items are used by the ‘Middle Class’, it’d be getting a welcome tax relief.
Items that will now be taxed at 12% instead of 18%, are as follows: Pouches, Purses and Handbags, Jewellery Boxes, Wooden Photo Frames, Photographs, Mirrors including those with bejewelled frames, Handicraft and Artwork made of Cork and Sholapith, Stone Artwork and Inlay work, Glass statues which are not made of Crystal, Glass Artwork, pots, jars, vases, bottles including casks, candle votives, and dessert covers.
Artwork made of iron, brass, aluminium, copper, copper alloy, electroplated with silver or nickel, Handicraft lamps including those made of ‘Panchlogam/Panchdhatu’, Artwork made of minerals, veggies, wax, natural gums, resins, stearin, acrylic and fondant modelling pastes, lac, shellac, Ganjifa cards, Bamboo carpet floorings, Zip Fasteners, Drawer Sliders, Manually operated Rubber Rollers, Kerosene fuelled Pressure Stoves made of Brass, will now be taxed at 12%.
While the following items, which were previously under higher GST slabs, will now come under the lowest 5% GST slab: Ethanol, Biofuel Pellets (Solid), Fertilizer grade Phosphoric Acid, Footwear below Rupees 1,000 price band, All Fabrics under HSN Code 5801, Handloom carpets like Dari and Namda/Gabba, Knitted Caps costing less than Rupees 1,000, Door hangings or ‘Toran’, Handcrafted laces, tapestries, braids and bejewelled prunings in them.