Group of Ministers to take up technical glitches faced by GST Network

Abhishek Law Kolkata | Updated on January 09, 2018

Sushil Kumar Modi, Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar and a member of the GST Council, at an interactive session at the Bharat Chamber of Commerce in Kolkata on Friday. - Debasish Bhaduri

The Group of Ministers (GoM) appointed to oversee the implementation of GST will be taking up issues relating to technical glitches faced by GST Network – the IT backbone of the new indirect tax system. It is also likely to meet Infosys officials at Bengaluru later this month.

According to Sushil Kumar Modi, Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar and a member of the GST Council, work is on towards resolving technical issues faced by the GSTN. Modi is also the Convenor of the Group of State Finance Ministers appointed to oversee the implementation of GST in the country. In November, this group of ministers had met Nandan Nilekani, the non-executive Chairman of Infosys.

Infosys developed the GSTN platform through which traders pay tax. However, the Delhi-based Confederation of All India Traders had recently threatened to sue the IT major over the snags, saying it couldn't understand why no action had been taken against the company on the charge of wasting taxpayers' money.

“GSTN has been a bit slow at times. But we cannot say that it has not performed or that the system is a failure. However, in the Bengaluru meeting we will be taking up matters relating to technical glitches,” Modi told presspersons on the sidelines of an interactive session organised by the Bharat Chamber of Commerce.

According to him, the GSTN has to be aligned to the IT infrastructure of states and this has led to some “teething problems” in the initial days. Sources say Infosys has deployed resident engineers in every state to liaise directly with state GST authorities and sort out issues locally.

“It will take some time for the systems to be aligned. But, month on month, we do see a reduction in the technical glitches that the GSTN witnessed,” he added.

Suggestions for GSTN

According to Modi, some of the suggestions put forward towards increasing compliance and creation of simpler GSTN include more interaction with users via pop-ups; a simpler user interface; an inbuilt system of alerts and warning for users. Also proposed are options to review forms and documents before they can be saved and uploaded to the GST and an option to take out print-outs of these forms.

“We want more compliance and for that the system has to be simpler. The number of forms to be filled up reduced and users have to more comfortable in using the network. We have raised these issues in a previous meeting with the GSTN and Infosys,” he pointed out.

Published on December 08, 2017

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