GST spares langar, but not ingredients

By 12th July 2017 0 Comments


The largest community kitchen in Golden Temple in Amritsar which was set to incur an extra financial burden of Rs 10 crore due to the Goods and Services Tax can expect some relief after the Finance Ministry exempted free food being served at gurdwaras and other places of worship from the reform measure. The central government on Tuesday clarified that the free food typically supplied in anna kshetras (food areas) run by religious institutions would be exempt from the Goods and Services Tax (GST). “Further, prasadam supplied by religious places like temples, mosques, churches, gurudwaras, dargahs, attracts nil Central GST and State GST or Integrated GST, as the case may be,” a Finance Ministry statement said. The statement came after some groups including the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) sought exemption from GST for inputs. Minister of Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Kaur had also last week sought exemption for purchases related to langar and other services to gurdwaras.

However, the SGPC said it was examining the decision, which does not exempt items used to prepare the food. For instance, some of the inputs and input services, such as sugar, vegetable edible oils, ghee, butter, and the service for transportation of these goods, used in the making of such offerings will remain within the ambit of GST.
“We are yet to examine the orders of the Finance Ministry, as it is learnt that inputs which are used for making langar have not been exempted, after which we will decide the course of action,” said the spokesperson of SGPC Amritsar. “Most of these inputs or input services have multiple uses. Under the GST regime, it is difficult to prescribe a separate rate of tax for such inputs when supplied for a particular purpose,” the Ministry said, pointing out that GST does not envisage end use-based exemptions.
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Posted in: Punjab