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Not the time to bring petrol, diesel under GST’s ambit: Nirmala Sitharaman

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Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday revealed that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) council discussed the inclusion of petrol and diesel but members were opposed to it.

The inclusion of petrol and diesel was discussed following an order of the Kerala High Court that ordered the council in June to discuss the idea following a petition in this regard.

Meanwhile, Sitharaman said, “On the direction of court it was brought on to table but members spoke very clearly they do not want it to be included in GST. This will be reported to the high court as the GST Council felt it was not the time to bring petroleum products under the GST.”

The minister also announced that the GST rate on bio-diesel for blending with diesel (used by oil marketing companies) has been reduced from 12% to 5%.

GST on Zomato, Swiggy service

The GST Council has fixed levy level for Food-delivery apps like Swiggy and Zomato. The council said,  “The place of the delivery will be the point where the tax will be collected by the food delivery apps. They will pay GST on it. Notably, there is no new or extra tax. The tax was earlier payable by the restaurants, now the tax will be paid by the food delivery aggregators.

GST on COVID-19 drugs

The council also extended concessional GST rates on drugs used in COVID-19 treatment till December 31, Sitharaman said.

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, “We have seen in the last one year and probably earlier that some life-saving drugs, which are not connected with COVID-19 and are very expensive. Exemptions have been given for such drugs.”

The minister added, “I am giving the names of two because those two are very expensive drugs – Zolgensma and Viltepso. These two are very important drugs which cost something like Rs 16 crores. So the council has decided to grant exemption from GST for these 2.”

The finance minister further said, “Drugs that are suggested by the Ministry of Health for treating muscular atrophy, on the recommendation of Health Ministry and Dept of Pharmaceuticals, are also exempted for IGST on import for personal use.”

 

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