Union Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today denied that ‘Kadalai Mittai’ (peanut brittle) was taxed more under Goods and Services Tax (GST) than pizza, and said such rumours were being spread by the social media. Addressing a meeting to give clarifications on GST here, she said,”only five percent GST was imposed on peanut brittle, whereas 18 per cent GST was levied on pizza served at restaurants and five percent on pizza breads that can be used in homes or eateries.” On a request to exempt Idly batter and match boxes from GST, the Union minister of Commerce and Industry said the same would be placed before the GST council for consideration. GST was not aimed at increasing the revenue but monitoring the 85 per cent informal economy of the country which was functioning without any bank transaction, she said. Stating that BJP had earlier opposed GST as it did not have the compensation component for manufacturing states like Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat, she said, “Now we have introduced compensation for the manufacturing states.” “Both the Central and State governments will now get equal revenue from GST,” she added. To a query during a press meet, she said, “GST rates were fixed in consultation with all the state governments after various rounds of meeting of GST councils with the participation of finance ministers of 29 states, seven union territories and Union Finance Minister.”
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“I believe Tamil Nadu representatives would have discussed the business concerns of the state in the council,” she said. Sitharaman also urged the small and medium businessmen to registrar under GST.