GST
FM Nirmala Sitharaman has also suggested that similar exercises take place across the country next month to understand concerns of GST filers.

In a recent interactions with the media, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had hinted that GST was still evolving and the government is open to making changes needed to further simplify the system. That seems to now be underway with the government’s relevant departments holding direct interactions with the users in live demonstrations on the issues being faced by those filing the GST returns, PTI reports.

The meeting held in New Delhi on Saturday had chartered accountants and traders apart from the officials. Those present in the meeting were able to watch how a typical GST assessee would file the return and what practical difficulties are encountered. The stakeholders were asked to provide their suggestions to improve the system as well. Those attending included the Rajasthan Tax Consultants' Association, ICAI, CAIT and Laghu Udyog Bharti. The government side was represented by CBIC Chairman, GSTN CEO, Member (Tax Policy), CBIC, AS (Revenue), Joint Secretary (Revenue), JS (TRU-1) and EVP- GSTN, apart from the FM.

Similar meetings are now planned across the country and the respective Commissioners heading the circles will hold these meetings and collect feedback. The interactions will involve officials from GSTN and CBIC as well and will be an ongoing activity till the GST returns filing process is made customer-friendly and smooth.

A new form for filing the GST returns has been developed and uploaded on the portal. This form will come into effect from April 1, 2020. However, those wanting to voluntarily adopt the new form are permitted to do so. Some 85,000 returns in the new form have been filed so far.

Among these interactions, officials at the Ministry level were reportedly surprised to find that users at the end of the spectrum were not aware of the revisions made in the instructions to file the returns. The department decided to issue circulars clarifying some of the issues raised and any new suggestions being received implemented.