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GSTN Chairperson Cleared Doubts and Questions Regarding GST Rollout Navin Kumar the chairperson of GST Network assured that the IT platform will be available for the full usage from July 15 and the stabilization will only come after 3 to 4 months after the roll of GST. Some of the questions were raised in front of him which was answered in his own way: What are the insights about the upcoming GST roll out and what are the workings? On this question, he answered that “We are very, very stressed now. We are working 28 hours a day.” Asking about the public need of knowledge and the question that many people must be approaching you for all their registration needs the Chairperson replied that, “Industry generally talks to the government, but, yes, we keep getting tweets and messages. There was some problem when enrolment was on and the tax department cancelled a lot of registered service taxpayers that had got provisional IDs as they were apparently not active. These 50-60 people lined up at our office. We then referred the matter to the tax department and it was resolved.” The confidence also rose over the testing of the software, as the chairperson assured that the software is fairly working while also mentioning that the beta test could not be possible. He said that “It should be a stable system. Problems that surfaced during the first phase of the testing have been resolved. We did the testing on the basis of the rules that came in December. After that, some changes were made to the rules. Those changes we have absorbed now, so there is no time to do beta testing for that. Other than that, we have done all other tests. So, we are fairly confident of the system.” While asking about the July launching the chairperson was reluctant and mentioned some strict policies which must be handled before the launching. He said that “If we had more time, we would have been perhaps better-placed. When we started with Infosys, the GST was not in sight. The Constitution Amendment Bill was still in Parliament and we were in a dilemma. The project was costing Rs 1, 400 crore. Could we make a commitment when the GST is not there? We went to the empowered committee of state finance ministers and apprised them of the situation. Our proposal was to let us develop the software and hold back on the hardware, where all the money goes. They agreed and allowed us to work on the draft processes. The software development started after the draft law was approved. The model law was put in the public domain in May and was revised in November, and the rules were given in December. All the development till then was modified on the basis of the December rules. After the central registration, there have been further revisions, necessitating more changes in the software. Thankfully, those are not very many.” And asking about the final completion he mentioned that, “We have been working on that. For return form GSTR 1, the coding has been done and the testing is also at a very advanced stage. By July 15, GSTR 1 will be ready. GSTR 2 will be ready by the end of July and GSTR 3 will be ready 10 days after that. But you have to see how things have evolved. So, we are just in time. But the good thing is that the GST Council did not defer the roll-out. Starting from July 1, the system will be available in a staggered fashion.” While discussing the API issues and relatively lesser available APIs to the GSPs was creating problems and the chairperson stated that “When we developed the software based on the December rules, we provided APIs to GSPs. But half of them thought of waiting until the legislation was in place as it would have gone through changes. These are people who did not work on the basis of the December APIs. But there are others who did so. Through discussion, we have worked out timelines for GSTR 1, GSTR 2, and GSTR3. We will give them GSTR 1 by June 28 so that they can be ready for the invoice upload facility by July 15. The other two APIs for GSTR 2 and 3 will be given after that.”
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