Shillong: Meghalaya has lost revenue of
around Rs 1175 crore, much of it due to deficiencies in the
transitional process from sales tax to VAT, a Comptroller and
Auditor General report has said.
In the absence of a mechanism for monitoring the
receipt of the returns, the assessing officers could not
detect non-submission of returns by 11,816 dealers between May
2005 and March 2009, and consequently a penalty of Rs 372.21
crore could not be levied, the report tabled in the Assembly
The state government also failed to claim compensation
from the Centre due to the implementation of VAT which led to
a revenue loss of Rs 247.49 crore, it said.
According to the report, the government failed to
detect and register 606 dealers who sold taxable goods of Rs
27.44 crore, resulting in tax evasion as well as a loss of
penalty of over Rs 6 crore.
"In absence of a mechanism to check input tax credit
claimed by the dealers coupled with the failure to scrutinise
returns effectively, the government failed to detect excess
claims of input tax credit of Rs 30.40 crore. Further, delay
in implementation of VAT on liquor led to a revenue loss of Rs
39 crore," the report said.
The CAG also took a dig at the Meghalaya government
for not finalising the VAT manual even after four years of
implementation of VAT in the state, due to which functional
areas of the taxation department could not be streamlined.
In its audit result, the CAG detected that there was
non-levy of fine of Rs 271.80 crore on 3,58,992 commercial
trucks for carrying excess load beyond the permissible limit.
Also, thirteen registered dealers concealed turnover
of Rs 54.96 crore and evaded tax of Rs 2.74 crore on which a
penalty of Rs 5.48 crore was also leviable.
Pooh-poohing the government, Accountant General Onkar
Nath said, "If action is taken, the government can still
recover much of the amounts".
"If the government is really serious with its revenue
collection, it would not have to approach the Centre with a
begging bowl everytime," Nath said, pointing to this year`s
plan size of Rs 2,230 crore, 50 per cent of which can be met
from revenue generation if the departments are streamlined.
However, the AG rued that the response of the
government towards the assessments of the CAG has been "very,