New Delhi: The Centre's decision to go ahead with GST rate cut on over 175 items in the top slab got a strong backing from the fact that the month of August earned surplus for the government.
As per a leading media daily, in the month of August the deficit came down to Rs 7,000 crore from 17,000 crore in July. In addition, if around Rs 8,000 crore is taken into acocunt in form of compensation cess levied on automobiles, aerated drinks and tobacco gave ministers the space and confidence to go ahead.
The GST Council on Friday decided to cut tax rate on a wide range of daily-use items - from chewing gums to detergents -- to 18 percent while keeping only 50 items, mostly demerit, sin and luxury goods in top 28 percent bracket, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi said.
The all-powerful Council pruned the list of items attracting the top 28 percent tax rate to just 50 from 227 previously. In effect, the Council, in its 23rd meet today, cut rates on 177 goods.
"There were 227 items in the 28 percent slab. The fitment committee had recommended that it should be pruned to 62 items. But the GST Council has further pruned 12 more items," Sushil Modi told reporters on the sidelines of the ongoing Council meeting.