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21,791 Fake GST Registrations Detected, Says Nirmala Sitharaman

Updated: Dec 17, 2023

An amount of ₹ 24,010 crore (state - ₹ 8,805 crore + Centre - ₹ 15,205 crore) of suspected tax evasion was detected during the special drive," Nirmala Sitharaman said.

In a response to queries in Rajya Sabha, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman revealed that during a two-month-long special drive, GST officers identified 21,791 fake GST registrations, uncovering suspected tax evasion amounting to over ₹24,000 crore. The entities in question, split between state tax and CBIC jurisdictions, were discovered to be non-existent.

To mitigate the impact on honest taxpayers and prevent undue hardship, Sitharaman emphasized that instructions were issued to exercise caution in using powers such as summons and provisional attachment of property.

In response to concerns about challenges faced by e-commerce enterprises in obtaining GST registrations, Sitharaman highlighted a simplified procedure for e-commerce operators, allowing registration in a state without physical presence by providing details of the principal place of business in another state.

Additionally, amendments to GST Rules, including biometric-based Aadhaar authentication, were introduced to strengthen the registration process, with a pilot project initiated in Gujarat and later extended to Puducherry and Andhra Pradesh. Non-compliance with providing bank account details within the stipulated time results in automatic system-based suspension, which can be revoked upon subsequent compliance.

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