Vapi (Guj)- Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said that the finance ministry’s focus is not only on increasing GST revenue but also on bringing all the business establishments under its ambit.

She was speaking at a function to open 12 GST Suvidha Kendras in Gujarat from here, which will help business establishments to have flawless GST registration and will help them resolve their issues at such centres.

“GST ‘one nation one tax’, collection is going up every year, every month. GST has brought tax rates down on many items compared to earlier times. Businessmen know that they are not going to be double taxed under GST which was the case earlier. GST collection is increasing because of it,” Sitharaman said.

But many establishments still prefer to remain out of the ambit of GST and are not part of the formal economy, she said.

“Why should they come in the tax net, not because they will pay me tax, but for the true strength of the economy what we capture is only some and not entire and formalization of economy can happen only when everybody is onboard,” she said.

“Staying out of the (formal) economy is neither good for the country nor for those individuals,” she said.

“You believe that you benefit by staying out you don’t come in the net, you don’t get to be noticed, which is not true. Actually you are losing out on potential buyers,” she said.

“So from now on I would like equal attention for the collection of tax, numbers of which are going up every year and month.. yes we have to give care and focus to that but equally our focus should be that more and more establishments and businesses are covered. The country should benefit from having a transparent tax regiment from which everybody benefits,” she said.

At the function, five people who uploaded their paid GST bills on the government portal, were awarded Rs 10 lakh each based on a draw.

Sitharaman congratulated those winners and said that every consumer should get their bills. “In a way, it has a very big message, and that is the spirit with which the consumer should make sure that they participate in the development of the country.

“I also appreciate those who had uploaded their bill but who did not win in the lottery,” she said, adding that every consumer should be encouraged to upload their bills.

GST revenue collection for October 2023 was the second highest ever, next only to April 2023, at Rs 1.72 lakh crore.

Gujarat Finance Minister Kanu Desai and officials of the State GST department were present at the function to open GST Suvidha Kendras in 12 different cities of Gujarat including Ahmedabad, Rajkot and Panchmahals.  (PTI)


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