No clar­ity de­spite GST ses­sion

The ed­u­ca­tional work­shop or­gan­ised by TAAI with of­fi­cials from the CBEC failed to clear doubts of travel agents. Hope­fully, the board will in­clude feed­back from the trade in its re­port to the Min­istry of Fi­nance.


Af­ter re­peated re­quests from its mem­bers, the Travel Agents As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia (TAAI) reached out to the Cen­tral Board of Ex­cise and Cus­toms (CBEC) to get the lowdown on Goods & Ser­vice Tax (GST) straight from the horse’s mouth. The as­so­ci­a­tion mem­bers were hope­ful that af­ter at­tend­ing a mul­ti­tude of ses­sions on GST over the last few months, this one would bring some clar­ity, but in vain.

Sam­pat Da­mani, Chair­man, West­ern Re­gion, TAAI, says, “We are still try­ing to find our feet as far as GST is con­cerned. De­spite con­duct­ing mul­ti­ple ses­sions on GST, our mem­bers still have no clar­ity. At the be­hest of In­dia Tourism, se­nior of­fi­cials from CBEC agreed to con­duct pre­sen­ta­tions for our mem­bers. But even the spokesper­sons could not clar­ify our doubts since there is still a lot of am­bi­gu­ity and over­lap­ping as far as GST for the travel in­dus­try is con­cerned.” Rashmi Verma, Sec­re­tary, Min­istry of Tourism, had also come down to Mum­bai to talk to some agents re­gard­ing this is­sue. Da­mani adds that CBEC will take the mem­bers’ in­puts and present them be­fore the Union Min­istry of Fi­nance for vet­ting. “It is a long process. Un­til then the agents will have to try and sur­vive. The gov­ern­ment will take it easy in the first three months of GST and hand­hold us un­til Septem­ber. They are giv­ing us time for trial and er­ror till the pic­ture is clearer. Our in­dus­try is quite com­plex with too many lay­ers,” Da­mani adds.

Sam­pat Da­mani

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