As the deadline for filing the final returns for the first month of GST nears, the Sushil Modi-led Group of Ministers has asked the IT backbone provider GSTN to send reminder text messages to 20 lakh businesses which are yet to submit the tax forms.
In its second meeting, the Group of Ministers (GoM) asked the GST-Network to brace for the rush of last-minute filers.
The last date for filing of final sales returns for July in GSTR-1 form is October 10, while the date for uploading of purchase returns in GSTR-2 is October 31.
The final GSTR-3, matching GSTR-1 and 2, is to be filed by November 10.
"So far 33 lakh businesses have filed GSTR-1 for July, while 53 lakh had filed the initial GSTR-3B returns.
"We appeal to people to file the returns on time. Infosys has prepared a list of businesses who are yet to file returns. GSTN will be sending out mobile messages to these 20 lakh businesses reminding them to file returns," he said.
Besides, the GoM has also asked Infosys, which has prepared the back-end of the GST Network portal, to be prepared to handle the load that would come for GSTR-2 filing betweenOctober 11 to 31.
"GSTR-2 filing load is the second big challenge and we have alerted Infosys to be prepared," he said.
The GST Council in its meeting on October 6would be apprised of the deliberations of the GoM and the improvement in GST Network functioning over the past one month.
He said GSTN has accepted initial returns for August in GSTR-3B without any major glitch being reported and so far over 43.58 lakh businesses have filed it for August.
The next meeting of the GoM will be held after a fortnight.
"We are satisfied with the performance of GSTN. Since the formation of GoM, a lot of issues have been resolved, still some issues remain for which Infosys has been given a timeline to resolve," he said.
A group of ministers under Sushil Modi was constituted last month to monitor and resolve technological challenges faced during GST return filing.
The GSTN, the information technology (IT) backbone and portal for real-time taxpayer registration, migration and tax return filing under the GST, had faced downtime when the first deadline for filing of July returns approached, forcing the government to extend the last date.
Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac is also a member of the group.
The other members are Amar Agarwal, Minister for Commercial Taxes, Chhattisgarh; Krishna Byregowda, Minister for Agriculture, Karnataka; and Etela Rajendar, Finance Minister, Telangana.