Amritsar, August 5
The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has stopped charging Goods and Service Tax (GST) on rental accommodation from devotees staying at the ‘serais’ of the Golden Temple with immediate effect following the “clarification” today by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC).
Rs 48 lakh penalty imposed
SGPC additional secretary Partap Singh said they had been directed to pay Rs 2.31 crore, including Rs 48 lakh penalty, for not realising GST from the occupants of Saragarhi Niwas
“If the CBIC says that no GST can be applicable on accommodation provided by religious bodies, then what was the logic of sending us this notice?” he said
Since July 18, the SGPC had been charging 12 per cent the GST from the devotees who have been staying in its three ‘serais’ — Baba Deep Singh Yatri Niwas, Mata Bhag Kaur Niwas and Sri Guru Gobind Singh NRI Niwas located outside the precincts of the Golden Temple.
SGPC’s additional secretary Partap Singh confirmed that from today, the SGPC has stopped charging the GST from devotees who stay at three ‘serais’.
“The 12 per cent GST was being charged as per the fresh notification in consultation with our legal expert,” he said.
He opined that the CBIC has now gone on the back foot after protests from several quarters, including the Rajya Sabha and theLok Sabha.
Mentioning about a separate recovery notice which has already been served upon the SGPC against another ‘serai’, Saragarhi Niwas, he said that the SGPC had been directed to pay Rs 2.31 crore, including Rs 48 lakh penalty, for not realising the GST fromthe occupants.
Saragarhi Niwas was opened in 2017 and the SGPC used to charge
Rs 1,100 per room for a day. As per the previous notification, the GST is applicable for room booking if the tariff is Rs 1,000 per day or above. “If the CBIC says that no GST can be applicable on accommodation provided by religious bodies, then what was the logic of sending us this notice?” Partap Singh said.
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