New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal alleged on Tuesday that with the Goods and Services Tax (GST) being linked with the Enforcement Directorate (ED), even those traders paying the tax can be arrested by the federal agency.
The government has amended the provisions of the money-laundering law to allow the ED to share information with the GST network. The move would help in the recovery of the GST evaded through money laundering.
"A large proportion of traders do not pay GST -- some out of compulsion, some intentionally. A few days ago, the Centre also brought the GST within the purview of the ED. It means that now, if a businessman does not pay the GST, the ED will arrest him directly and bail will not be granted," Kejriwal alleged in a tweet in Hindi.
GSTN handles the technology backbone of the indirect-tax regime and is the repository of all GST-related information, including return, tax filing and other compliances.
According to the amendment to the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, GSTN has been included in the list of entities with which the ED will share information.
"The GST system is so complex that even those paying GST can be put behind bars under some provisions. This means that any businessman can be sent to jail whenever the Centre wants. This is extremely dangerous," the chief minister alleged.
The national convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) also opined that even the small traders will be affected by this, while asserting that this development is "extremely dangerous" for the country's economy.
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