Suspicious transactions in GST going up: Amit Mitra

Suspicious transactions in GST going up: Amit Mitra

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Finance Minister Amit Mitra during a media interaction following the presentation of the State Budget 2020-21. (PTI Photo)

West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra on Tuesday said suspicious transactions relating to GST is going up, while Rs 46,000 crore is yet to be recovered from penal interest charges arising out of delayed GSTR III-B filing.

Speaking at a CII event here, Mitra said the government has gone on record in Parliament stating that fraudulent transactions to the tune of Rs 44,000 crore has taken place as traders failed to upload invoices.

"The GST was implemented in a haste without doing any beta testing. This has resulted in fraudulent transactions taking place across the country. Suspicious transactions are also going up," Mitra said.

He said there has been an unrecovered amount of Rs 46,000 crore on account of penal interest due to delayed GSTR-III-B filing by traders.

Mitra said owing to Centre's low tax collection, West Bengal will stand to lose Rs 11,000 crore which will be a heavy blow on the state's finances.

The minister alleged that the Centre has been steadily increasing cess and surcharges which are not passed on to the states.

"From 2013-14 till now, the Centre has raised cess from six per cent to 18 per cent," he said.

On the country's economic situation, Mitra said in the Global Democracy Index compiled by The Economist magazine, India's ranking has dropped by 10 places to 51st in the world.

As per the Global Social Mobility Index prepared by WEF, India's position is 76th among 82 countries.

"These are very disturbing signals as these are important for sustaining investors' confidence," Mitra said.

Mitra said India's GDP growth is the lowest in 11 years, employment is the lowest in 45 years while core sectors like coal, steel and cement have posted negative growth rates.

In contrast, Mitra said, West Bengal's growth rate was double that of the national average with better industrial growth.

"In fact, the country is passing through a period of stagflation, high inflation coupled with low growth", he said.

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