New Delhi, July 1: The biggest tax reform since its Independence- the Goods and Services Tax (GST) has come into effect across the nation on July 1 amid a historic midnight session in the Central Hall of Parliament. President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addressed the gathering, before the President and the Prime Minister pressed a button to mark the launch of GST.Also Read - Swiggy, Zomato Will Now Pay GST on Restaurant Services Supplied Through Them, Says Sitharaman

The introduction of GST was a momentous event for the nation and would be administered through a modern world-class information technology (IT) system. The much anticipated mega event was awaited by 1.25 billion citizens of the country. The introduction of GST in the country is a disruptive change and is very similar to the introduction of VAT when there was initial resistance. With GST implementation, all the states are slated to gain immensely as they shall now get equal opportunities of development. Also Read - Ordering Food Through Zomato, Swiggy To Become Costly Soon As Govt Panel Moots GST On Aggregators

The GST Council has fixed the tax rates for 1,211 items, keeping a majority of these in the 18% slab. Goods and services have been listed under the four tax slabs – 5 per cent, 12 per cent, 18 per cent and 28 per cent. Few items like gold and rough diamonds have exclusive tax rates while some have been exempted from taxation. With the implementation of GST, goods and services have become cheaper and costlier starting today. After GST rollout, many items like footwear below Rs. 500 and garments could become cheaper. Also Read - Central Govt Panel Plans to Bring Petrol, Diesel Under GST: Report

Here are products that will now cost less after implementation of GST

  1. Movie tickets: Movie tickets are believed to get cheaper from July 1 as Tax incidence on movie tickets is likely to come down for the same reason of entertainment tax being subsumed under GST.
  2. Cable and DTH services: TV lovers will have a good time post-GST as Tax incidence on Cable and DTH services is believed to go down under the GST regime as entertainment tax levied by states will be subsumed under the tax regime. Currently, cable and DTH services attract an entertainment tax in states in the range of 10-30 percent over and above the service tax levy of 15 per cent.
  3. Eating outside: People who are fond of eating will have a good time. Meals at a restaurant may become cheaper as the GST rate of twelve/ eighteen per cent is lower than the current tax applied on food served in restaurants.
  4. Radio taxi operator: With the GST coming into effect on July 1, riding a radio cab may be cheaper as the new GST rates are lower than the current service tax rate by a percentage point.
  5. Flight tickets: Under the new GST implementation, flight tickets will get cheaper. This means the economy air travel will get marginally cheaper due to a reduction in the effective tax rate of 0.6 percent. It has to be noted that business class airfare becomes more expensive by three to four percent.
  6. Cars/ bikes get cheaper: Prices of popular cars and motorcycles & scooters have dropped from Saturday as the GST was rolled out across the nation. Toyota India said that price of the Fortuner SUV will come down by Rs 2.1 lakh on account of lower GST rates. Larger SUVs and sedans are believed to witness a price cut while smaller cars will also be marginally cheaper. As per Economic Times, the Mercedes GLS350 SUV will be cheaper by Rs 3 lakh, while Hyundai’s popular Creta is expected to see a drop between Rs 40,000 and Rs 60,000.
  7. Daily items that will now cost less include:
  • Hair oil
  • Ice cream
  • Cheese Masala
  • Sweets
  • Packed curd
  • Economy class air travel
  • Corn flakes
  • Toothpaste
  • Soap
  • Packaged tea and coffee
  • Atta (packed & branded)
  • Packed Paneer

A number of products have been exempted from any of the tax slabs. Fresh meat, fish, chicken, eggs, milk, butter milk, curd, natural honey, fresh fruits and vegetables, flour, besan, bread, all kinds of salt, jaggery and hulled cereal grains have been exempted from the taxation system.

GST is the first of its kind system in the country when both Centre and State shall be putting consolidated efforts in the same direction. We shall be proud of this wonderful system for generations to come as GST is a landmark achievement which is bound to take the nation towards exponential growth.

On Friday, GST Council had its 18th meeting and GST would be implemented in a short while from now. . The GST has been termed as a “Good and Simple Tax” which would ultimately benefit the people. The Prime Minister also quoted a shloka from the Rig Veda to describe the spirit of common goal, common determination, and leading to mutual and shared benefit for the society.