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GST Council

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

GST Council

What to study?

For Prelims: About GST Council- composition, functions and related key facts, overview of GST.

For Mains: Issues associated with GST, need for reforms and various measures announced in this regard.

 Context: The all-powerful GST Council, in its 38th meeting has voted for uniform rate of 28% on lotteries across the country.

To facilitate the setting up industrial parks, the Council has decided that all entities with 20% ownership by central or state governments will be exempt from GST payable for long-term land leases from January 1, 2020. Earlier, only entities with a 50% government stake were exempt.

Why do we need a GST Council?

  1. The predominant responsibility of the GST Council is to ensure to have one uniform tax rate for goods and services across the nation.
  2. It is the key decision-making body that will take all important decisions regarding the GST.
  3. It dictates tax rate, tax exemption, the due date of forms, tax laws, and tax deadlines, keeping in mind special rates and provisions for some states.

How is the GST Council structured?

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) is governed by the GST Council. Article 279 (1) of the amended Indian Constitution states that the GST Council has to be constituted by the President within 60 days of the commencement of the Article 279A.


According to the article, GST Council will be a joint forum for the Centre and the States. It consists of the following members:

  1. The Union Finance Minister will be the Chairperson
  2. As a member, the Union Minister of State will be in charge of Revenue of Finance
  3. The Minister in charge of finance or taxation or any other Minister nominated by each State government, as members.

GST Council recommendations:

Article 279A (4) specifies that the Council will make recommendations to the Union and the States on the important issues related to GST, such as, the goods and services will be subject or exempted from the Goods and Services Tax.

Sources: the hindu.