Cheques, maps, inks, aseptic packaging to get costlier

After a two-day meeting of the GST Council that concluded in Chandigarh on 29 June, Nirmala Sitharaman announced several tax rate changes. The GST rate changes on a large number of goods and services will be effective from 18 July.

01 Jul 2022 | By Janhavi Sisodia

GST tax for cheques at 18%, pre-packaged and pre-labelled items such as curd, lassi and buttermilk at 5% and maps at 12%

The 47th GST Council Meeting, headed by Union Minister for finance and corporate affairs, Nirmala Sitharaman said tax exemptions have been withdrawn on a few items, and these will now be taxed as per the Council’s decisions.

A big impact for the industry is the rate rationalisation to remove inverted duty structure from printing, writing or drawing ink.  This means printing, writing or drawing ink would be hiked to 18% from 12% at present.

Furthermore, maps and charts including atlases will attract a 12% levy. Plus the GST on tetra packs (aseptic packaging) would be hiked to 18% from 12% at present. Interestingly enough, unpacked, unlabelled and unbranded goods continue to remain exempt from GST.

Pre-packed and labelled meat (except frozen), fish, curd, paneer, honey, dried leguminous vegetables, dried makhana, wheat and other cereals, wheat or meslin flour, jaggery, puffed rice (muri), all goods and organic manure and coir pith compost will attract a 5% GST.

Also, capital goods used in petroleum and coal bed methane exploration will now be taxed at 12% instead of 5%. The Council also decided to raise tax rates on items such as ink, knives and pumps from 12% to 18% and solar water heaters and leather from 5% to 12%. In addition, cut and polished diamonds will attract 1.5% GST, up from 0.25% now. Also, hotels with rent below Rs 1,000 a night will attract 12%, and non-ICU hospital rooms with rent above Rs 5,000 will be taxed at 5% without input tax credit.

And finally, renting of truck/goods carriage where cost of fuel is included to attract 18% GST, up from 12%.

The 47th GST Council meeting under the chairmanship of the finance minister spoke about rate rationalisation, GST compensation to states, on corrections of invested duties, virtual digital assets, etc. The Council approved exemption of small retailers from GST registration for intra-state supplies through e-Commerce platforms.