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National Anti-profiteering Authority Established To Ensure GST Benefits Reach Customers

Businesses Not Passing On GST Cuts To End-Users Can Be Suspended Now!

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National Anti-profiteering Authority Established

Last week, GST Council had announced several reductions in GST slabs for common use products, and reduced GST for eating in restaurants and hotels.

Since then, social media has been abuzz with reports that businesses are still overcharging for products, whose GST has been reduced.

Taking a serious note of this issue, Govt. has decided to punish those businesses, which are still overcharging customers, in the name of GST.

And, strict punishment has been devised for such brands and companies, as their business can be now suspended.

This is indeed an excellent consumer-friendly decision by the Govt.

National Anti-profiteering Authority Established

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has announced the formation of National Anti-profiteering Authority, whose only task is to ensure that GST reductions and benefits are reaching the consumers.

This is a special authority, which has been empowered to suspend any business found of overcharging customers in the name of GST.

The Minister said,

“The National Anti-Profiteering Authority is an assurance to consumers of India. If any consumer feels that the benefit of tax rate cut is not being passed on, then he can complain to the authority,”

This National Anti-profiteering Authority is a 5-member committee, headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, and comprises Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia, CBEC Chairman Vanaja Sarna and chief secretaries from two states.

This authority has been given a sunset period of 2-years, from the date Chairman assumes charge.

Businesses Not Passing On GST Cuts Can Be Suspended Now!

The process will work this way:

  • All complaints arriving at the Authority would be sent to the state-level screening committees, which will go through the case, and allocate it accordingly.
  • Cases pertaining to national brands, will be examined by a Standing Committee
  • If the complaints have merit, it will be sent to Directorate General of Safeguards (DGS) for investigation
  • DGS will examine and investigate the case, and three months have been allocated for the same.
  • Once the investigation is completed, the report would be sent to the anti – profiteering authority for action.
  • Now, if the business is found to be guilty, they will be ordered to pass on the unpaid benefits to the end users. If the customer is not identified, then the sum would be transferred to a welfare fund, as directed by the authority. 18% interest on the amount has also been planned.
  • In case any business fails to comply, their registration can be blocked.

As per the Minister, establishment for such authority will safeguard consumer’s interest in the long run,

He said,

“The National Anti-Profiteering Authority is an assurance to consumers of India. If any consumer feels that the benefit of tax rate cut is not being passed on, then he can complaint to the authority,”

We will keep you updated as receive more information on this matter.

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