Home >News >India >GST Council Meeting highlights: Anti-Covid, life-saving drugs get tax relief
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The GST Council has turned down the proposal to bring petrol and diesel under the ambit of the uniform indirect tax regime during its meeting on Friday. Meanwhile, the council extended the GST relief on four drugs related to Covid-19 treatment till December 31, as well as announcing tax cuts for more life-saving drugs.

The council convened in Lucknow for its first physical meeting in 20 months - the last one was held on December 18, 2019 - with a packed agenda. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman chaired the meeting.

To the disappointment of many, the widespread demand to bring petrol and diesel under GST was turned down by the states. Covering petrol and diesel under Goods and Services Tax (GST) would do away with state taxes levied on them, expectedly bringing down prices a great deal.

Catch live updates from 45th GST Coucil meeting decisions here:

  • No new tax on food delivery by platforms like Zomato, Swiggy. Instead of restaurants, now aggregators will now collect GST from customers and pay it to government. This has been done plug leakages in GST collection from restaurant.
  • Two GoMs formed to look at rate rationalisation related issues as the GST and another to look at e-way bills, FASTags, etc. 
  • Collection cess for repaying the loans taken for compensation to continue till March 26, 2020.
  • Petroleum products to be included in GST was brought before the Council following a Kerala High Court order. States turned down this motion. The Council has decided to report back to the court.
  • GST on railway locomotives, parts and others increased to 18 per cent.
  • To reduce inversion and help domestic manufacturing, 12 per cent GST recommended on specified renewable energy devices .
  • All kinds of pens and their parts to be taxed at 18 per cent to correct inversion.
  • GST rate changes in order to have inverted duty structure correction such as in footwear and textile sector to be implemented from January 2022.
  • Airport and other goods imported on lease exempted from double taxation. IGST will be exempt. This will be allowed for lessors located in SEZs too.
  • Skill development programmes wholly funded by state and central government exempted from GST. Training programmes where government bears 75 per cent or more of the cost will be exempt too.
  • National permit fee charged by states for goods carrier exempted from GST. 
  • Transport of exported goods by vessel and air exemption from GST extended by one more year.
  • GST rates on biodiesel for blending with diesel reduced to 5 per cent.
  • Fortified rice kernels for ICDS schemes reduced to 5 per cent.
  • Retrofitment kits for vehicles used by divyangs reduced to 5 per cent.
  • Cancer-related drugs like Keytruda and others reduced.
  • GST rate on seven other medicines recommended by Health Ministry reduced to 5 per cent from 12 per cent
  • Extended GST relief for Covid drugs Amphotericin-B, Tocilizumab, Remdesivir and anti coagulants like Heparin till December 31. No extension on other equipment in earlier list.
  • Drugs suggested by Health Ministry for treating muscular atrophy imported for personal used exempted.
  • Very expensive life-saving drugs Zolgensma and Viltepso have been exempted from GST, says FM Sitharaman.
  • Some of the long-pending decisions have been cleared today, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman.
  • GST Council meeting still underway.

  • All eyes are on whether the council makes a decision to bring petrol and diesel under the ambit of GST or not. Voices in support of this demand have grown strong in recent past as fuel prices crossed 100 per litre in several cities.
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will address the briefing on decisions taken during the 45th GST Council meeting at 6:30 PM.

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