This refers to the report “Govt likely to introduce lottery system to boost GST compliance soon” (February 5). One ingenious way of ensuring tax compliance is to follow the example of countries that have thought outside the box. They have turned sales receipts issued by retailers into lottery tickets and seen a phenomenal jump in tax collection. Consumers will insist on receipts as there is a chance to win. But the government will have to ensure protection from counterfeiting of sales receipts. In the last 10 years, countries like China, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania and Slovakia have done this. This will ensure retail businesses cannot circumvent taxes.
Being a large country implementing this on a national scale will involve logistical problems, but with today’s technology that can be resolved. Many retailers do not issue receipts and it is the government that suffers in terms of loss of revenue. The finance minister and the finance panel should look into implementing such schemes for credit-debit card users as well as to usher in the long-term goal of transitioning into a cashless economy.
H N Ramakrishna, Bengaluru
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