Ahead Of GST Launch, PM Modi's Review, And A Warning On Cyber Security

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said extra care should be taken about cyber security pertaining to the Goods and Services Tax or GST, which is scheduled to be rolled out across the country on July 1

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Ahead Of GST Launch, PM Modi's Review, And A Warning On Cyber Security

Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a meeting with Arun Jaitley and other officials.

New Delhi:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the progress of the government's flagship Goods and Services Tax - billed as the biggest tax reform since Independence -- ahead of its expected launch on July 1. Sources said the Prime Minister discussed cyber-security in detail and asked officials to pay maximum attention to it.

The other subjects under focus included the readiness of the officials - training and sensitization, query handling mechanism, and monitoring. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and senior officials of the finance ministry and his office attended the meeting.

The Prime Minister said the creation of "one nation, one market, one tax" would greatly benefit the common man.

The Prime Minister also reviewed the Twitter handle @askGst_GOI -- where people's queries on GST will be answered real-time - and the all India toll-free number 1800-1200-232, which will be activated for the same purpose.

The new tax reform scraps the multiple tax systems by the Centre and the states that currently applies in the country.

The GST Council, chaired by Mr Jaitley and comprising his state counterparts, has already finalised tax rates on most items. The group will meet on June 11 to discuss some pending issues.

Under GST, there will be four tax slabs - 5 per cent for essential items, 12 per cent and 18 per cent for standard goods and services, 28 per cent for luxury and sin tax items. The last category will also have an extra cess besides GST. Most food items will not be taxed at all.

Mr Jaitley has said the GST could add as much as 2 percentage points to economic growth.

But recently, Bengal finance minister Amit Mitra, who heads a committee comprising 31 finance ministers of states, had said the nation is not ready for the rollout of GST.

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