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New Delhi [India], Sept.12: The Union Cabinet on Monday approved the setting up of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council as well as the setting up of its secretariat as per the following details:
(a) Creation of the GST Council as per Article 279A of the amended Constitution;
(b) Creation of the GST Council Secretariat, with its office at New Delhi;
(c) Appointment of the Secretary (Revenue) as the Ex-officio Secretary to the GST Council;
(d) Inclusion of the Chairperson, Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), as a permanent invitee (non-voting) to all proceedings of the GST Council;
(e) Create one post of Additional Secretary to the GST Council in the GST Council Secretariat (at the level of Additional Secretary to the Government of India), and four posts of Commissioner in the GST Council Secretariat (at the level of Joint Secretary to the Government of India).
The Cabinet also decided to provide for adequate funds for meeting the recurring and non-recurring expenses of the GST Council Secretariat, the entire cost for which shall be borne by the Central Government. The GST Council Secretariat shall be manned by officers taken on deputation from both the central and state governments.
The steps required in the direction of implementation of GST are being taken ahead of the schedule so far.
The Finance Minister has also decided to call the first meeting of the GST Council on 22nd and 23rd September 2016 in New Delhi.
The Constitution (122nd Amendment) Bill, 2016, for introduction of Goods and Services tax in the country was accorded assent by President Pranab Mukherjee on September8, 2016, and the same has been notified as the Constitution (101st Amendment) Act, 2016. As per Article 279A (1) of the amended Constitution, the GST Council has to be constituted by the President within 60 days of the commencement of Article 279A. The notification for bringing into force Article 279A with effect from 12th September, 2016 was issued on September 10, 2016.
As per Article 279A of the amended Constitution, the GST Council which will be a joint forum of the Centre and the states shall consist of the following members: -
a) Union Finance Minister - Chairperson
b) The Union Minister of State in-charge of Revenue of finance - Member
c) The Minister In-charge of finance or taxation or any other Minister nominated by each State Government - Members
As per Article 279A (4), the Council will make recommendations to the Union and the States on important issues related to GST, like the goods and services that may be subjected or exempted from GST, model GST Laws, principles that govern place of supply, threshold limits, GST rates including the floor rates with bands, special rates for raising additional resources during natural calamities/disasters, special provisions for certain states, etc. (ANI)