GST Bill passed by Parliament
The 122nd Constitution Amendment Bill introduced in Parliament in December 2014 has been passed by the Rajya Sabha and now also by the Lok Sabha with the amendments on 8th August 2016. Now the Bill must get ratified by at least half the number of 31 State Legislatures which means 16 States and then finally get the approval from the President.
Thereafter the GST Council has to be set up which will determine the GST design at the granular level. This will include the structure of GST including scope of CGST, SGST and IGST, the taxes subsumed, the items/commodities covered and other critical aspects such as the threshold limits for taxability, exemptions, and several other parameters critical for an ideal GST.
Further, for the GST to operate smoothly, the taxes paid on goods and services at every stage in the value chain needs to be tracked. This requires an IT infrastructure which will track the transactions and taxes paid and form the back-bone of GST. Reportedly considerable work has been already done on it, nevertheless it will need changes to correctly reflect the GST Law proposed by the GST Council and accepted by the Central & State Legislatures.
Last but not the least, the tax authorities and other stakeholders who will implement the GST need to be trained for a smooth introduction.