One year of GST: It’s technology that failed us, says Hasmukh Adhia

One year of GST: Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia on Friday said that it was the technology that failed a smooth transition to the era of Goods and Service Tax from the previous indirect tax regime. Speaking at an event, Hasmukh Adhia said that the people who work at the technological backbone of the GST — GSTN — are doing good work but despite their efforts, GSTN still fails sometimes.

The GSTN administers registration, invoice uploading, tax return filing and tax payment system under the new indirect tax regime run and managed by IT giant Infosys. “Since we had to meet a certain deadline, we needed to hurry up the processes (sic). Somewhere, I made a reference about the technology failing us but that does not mean that the people in the GSTN failed us. Marvelous people work in the GSTN and despite their efforts, the GSTN still fails us,” the finance secretary said.

He says that even as there are technical issues that need to be smoothened, the nation has come a long way since the implementation of the biggest tax reform India has seen. “We gained a bit in the process of simplification by introducing the GST but that does not mean there is no scope for the betterment of the existing system. We are still convinced that we need to do a lot more,” he added.

The GST was launched on July 1, 2017. A survey done on the 1st anniversary of the GST showed that a whopping 50% of businesses are still having trouble logging in and submitting information on the GSTN. A lot of businesses also feel that even after one year, the GST continues to be time-consuming and costly, a LocalCircles survey said. In the second year of the GST, simplification of the filing process through a single filing system is expected from the government.