ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Administering Goods and Services Tax in India

The long process of introducing a comprehensive Goods and Services Tax at the national level has thrown up many complex challenges. The question of the nature and structure of the agency for administering and collecting the GST is one of the most crucial ones. It appears that the existing institutional and organisational structure with multiple departments (one at the union and one in each of the states) would be maintained for collection of what is essentially a single tax (though with two components), thereby severely eroding most of the expected benefits of a national GST as well as putting a heavy burden on taxpayers. The influence of the bureaucratic complex and power politics of the organised civil services as well as a lack of political will are the major reasons for such a possible outcome. The need is to move towards a harmonised, modern and professionally managed national revenue agency for GST with a proper safeguard mechanism for preserving the fiscal federal nature of India and its states.

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