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E-way relief, for now, to e-commerce, courier firms sending small orders

The requirement for such bills in intra-state movement would be implemented in a phased manner

Dilasha Seth & Indivjal Dhasmana  |  New Delhi 

Photo: Shutterstock

Small orders that are part of a large consignment of multiple deliveries will not require generation of an electronic-way bill from April 1. A relief to e-commerce, courier and the like. Only, this relaxation might be temporary. At its meeting on Saturday, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council decided to make it mandatory for inter-state movement of goods worth over Rs 50,000 to have bills from April 1. The requirement for such bills in would be implemented in a phased manner. Giving details of the decision, the finance ministry said, "At present (from April 1), there is no requirement to generate an bill where an individual consignment value is less than Rs 50,000, even if the transporter is carrying goods worth than Rs 50,000 in a single conveyance." This essentially means if a truck out for delivery is carrying 20 orders, of which four are priced over Rs 50,000, only four bills will need to be generated. Pratik Jain, partner at consultants PwC India, said this would help transporters, specially those carrying small e-commerce, courier and food items. However, the ministry also said provisions for making the bill mandatory for these small orders, contained in sub-rule (7) of rule 138, is to be notified from a later date. Vishal Sharma, senior vice-president, ShopClues, said," this move should be made permanent." He said the step would boost the growth of MSME sector. The validity of an bill is one day, ending at midnight of the day immediately following the date of generation. The Council has now provided relief from this requirement in certain situations. The ministry said: “If the goods cannot be transported within the validity period of the bill, the transporter may extend the validity period in case of trans-shipment or in case of circumstances of an exceptional nature." Sources said this means a bill’s validity will be extended if a truck is held up at a warehouse for more than 24 hours. “It will be treated as an extraordinary situation if a truck needs to be stopped for one or two days at a warehouse. That period will be excluded,” one of the sources added. An bill has two parts, A and B. The former captures invoice-related details. B has details related to the transporter carrying the consignment, such as vehicle number, etc. Earlier, there was some confusion on what would happen to the movement of goods on a bill-to-ship-to-supply basis.

Which means goods are dispatched to a location different from the place of the person or entity ordering the consignment. For instance, a person in Chandigarh orders goods from Hyderabad to be delivered to Delhi. There was confusion on whether the bill was to be generated twice, once from Hyderabad to Delhi and once to Chandigarh. This was because the place of dispatch was not reflected in the bill in this case. chief executive Archit Gupta said the Council had cleared this confusion. Now, movement of goods on account of bill-to-ship-to supply will be handled through the capturing of place of dispatch in part-A of the bill. Also, movement of goods from the place of consignor to the place of transporter up to a distance of 50 km does not require filling of part-B of the bill. They have to generate only part-A. In the draft rules, the distance in this case was limited to 10 km. The slowing of GST revenues had prompted the Council to advance introduction of th ee-way bill to February 1. However, this had to be postponed after the portal crashed on the first day.

BILL DETAILS

* Can be generated on the bill portal * Alternatively, can be generated or cancelled through SMS and by Site-to-Site Integration (through API) Can be generated by consignor or consignee or transporter * When an bill is generated, a unique bill number (EBN) is allocated and is available to the supplier, recipient and transporter * Permits valid for one day to move goods up to 100 km * Public conveyance included as a mode of transport and responsibility of generating bill in this case will be of consignor or consignee

First Published: Mon, March 12 2018. 00:53 IST
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