New Delhi: Giving a jolt to the Modi government, GST collection for February 2019 fell to Rs 97,247 crore from Rs 1.02 lakh crore in the previous month, the Finance Ministry said on Friday.
“The total gross GST revenue collected in February 2019 is Rs 97,247 crore of which Central GST is Rs 17,626 crore, State GST (SGST) is Rs 24,192 crore, Integrated GST (IGST) is Rs 46,953 crore and Cess is Rs 8,476 crore,” the ministry said in a statement.
The government has lowered the GST collection target for current fiscal to Rs 11.47 lakh crore in the revised estimates, from Rs 13.71 lakh crore budgeted initially. It is worrisome for the government which has exceeded its fiscal deficit by 21.5 per cent during the first ten months of this fiscal year 2018-19.
“The real question is that how does the Government achieve the next year’s target which is around 20% higher than the current fiscal, with little leg room to increase the rates. Tax evasion and leakages still seem to be a huge problem for the Government,” said Pratik Jain, Partner, & Leader, Indirect Tax, PwC India.
With this, the total GST collections till February for the current fiscal stands at Rs 10.70 lakh crore and the number of sales return or GSTR-3B filed for the month of January up to February 28, 2019 stands at 73.48 lakh.
The Goods and services tax collection in January (for December) was over Rs 1 lakh crore. There were expectations that it would rise further and help the government in meeting the fiscal deficit target of 3.4 per cent.
“While the GST collections are in line with the average collection in this financial year, it has witnessed a slight dip vis-a-vis the previous month; a possible reason being the impact of rate rationalizations effective from January,” said Abhishek Jain, Tax Partner, EY India.
The GST collection target for the next fiscal 2019-20 has been budgeted at Rs 13.71 lakh crore.