By Accommodation Times Bureau
Following a series of complaints by state finance ministers the GST Council may
reduce the number of products in the highest slab of 28%. The ministers have
lodged complaints that several everyday commodities are facing the highest tax,
causing asperity to people.
At least two state finance ministers have alleged the council of taking wrong
decisions in case of some goods. They said that a number of items like bath
fittings, cement, steel products such as rods used for construction are in the top
bracket and should not belong there. "The idea was to classify the goods and
services into merit and non-merit goods with the non-merit goods in the top
bracket. But we have gone beyond that," said a state finance minister, who has
usually favored the Centre on most issues.
The minister said the "highest block" was too big and needed to be reduced. On
October 7, CBEC officials had also said that there were far too many items in the
The second state FM has said that the issue is expected to be discussed at the next
meeting of the Council scheduled in Guwahati, because of the concerns expressed
by several states. "In the medium-term the aim is to move to fewer slabs," the
minister said. Finance minister Arun Jaitley had last week reiterated the plan to
move to fewer slabs in the future.