Get past GST’s teething troubles
Apropos of “Cos face jail term for not reprinting revised MRP (FE, July 8), discerning the problems of a hasty entry, the Union consumer affairs minister’s brief instruction to reprint the new maximum retail prices on the unsold inventory, and the Kerala finance Minister’s—who incidentally is the chairman of the GST Council—terse statement that the existing printed prices of the pre-GST stock should stay unchanged should be construed as the birth pangs of the new tax regime. The yet to be set up National Anti-Profiteering Authority, a three-tier structure, is basically a machinery to monitor the transfer of the reduction in the rate of tax on the supply of goods or services or the benefit of input tax credit to the consumers. The silence of the Rules framed under the CGST Act 2017 on the arbitrariness in fixing MRP, exploiting the demand and supply, and in disregard to cost of production, is unexplained. Pricing in the service sector, principally to bill the voice and data transfers, has never been transparent and simple to comprehend for the interested party, the recipient of services. Among the myriad issues that crave for urgent resolution, the case of works contract stands out. With multiple contractors and sub-contractors engaged in the construction process, factoring input tax credit in the pricing of apartments is stuck in the whirlpool of uncertainty.
— Haridasan Rajan, Kozhikode
CJI under RTI
Apropos of “Transparent justice” (FE, July 10), kudos to the Supreme Court for realising that the CJI’s post should come under the RTI Act. The apex court has so far resisted it and is hearing a clutch of appeals against rulings that say the CJI is subject to the provisions of the transparency law. While the apex court inviting RTI scrutiny for the CJI’s office is welcome, the need is to get political parties to come under the law given how their members shape all policies.
— Sumona Pal, Kolkata