The Prime Minister of India,
South Block, New Delhi
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Harassment by Sales Tax Officials in giving Provisional ID and Password to dealers for GST in Ludhiana (Punjab)
The GST is lauded as uniform taxation system in the whole country. It is also boasted as Inspector-free regime for people especially the business community, but the harassment at the hands of bureaucrats in Taxation Department in Punjab adequately deflates such lofty claims. Collection of Provisional GST ID & Password in Ludhiana is not a child's cake.
As per the circular released by Govt of Punjab, Deptt. of Excise & Taxation, Punjab, the traders already registered under the VAT Act are required to migrate to GST Regime. For that, they are required to collect GST Provisional ID and Password from Taxation Department.
In many states like Haryana, Delhi etc., GST Provisional ID & Password is easily available online through existing login ID of the dealer, and one is not required to visit the department physically. In Punjab, however, the ego of our bureaucrats behests them to mandate people to visit them personally and beg the Provisional ID and Password after passing through lengthy torturous procedures. The Officials do not believe in working as per legal provisions but dictate terms as per their own self-made laws. One instance should be enough to prove it. The identity of the Dealer is purposely hidden here for fear of victimization.
On 19.12.16, we sent our representative to respective ETO in Ludhiana for collection of Provisional GST ID & Password. The representative carried with him the prescribed filled up proforma of Department duly signed & stamped by the Registered VAT Dealer. Photocopy of the PAN card of the Dealer was also enclosed with it. The particulars of the authorize representative were filled up and his ID proof was enclosed as his identity. Despite that, the ETO concerned refused to supply the ID on the ground that only a duly authorized Special Power of Attorney holder on stamp paper of Rs. 500/- or an advocate filing application alongwith his vakalatnama (Power of Attorney) shall be supplied the ID & Password. Our request to the ETO for written refusal was declined by him. Surprisingly, the ETO could not show any such legal provision, and adopted evasive attitude. This is not the lone case. Most of the Inspectors/ETOs are harassing people by demanding applications in this way only. May be, people are similarly suffering in other cities as well.
Sir, collection of Provisional ID & Password is a simple activity, which in many other states in the country is available online. The application proforma prescribed by the department itself nowhere mandates that the application should either be filed through an advocate or through Special Attorney duly authorized on Stamp paper of Rs. 500/- (in Punjab), but practically it is going on. No law of the land precludes an ordinary person like brother/sister/ Accountant/Employee etc. from acting as authorized representative under valid authority, especially for such a simple activity as collection of Provisional ID & Password of GST.
This only shows that law of the land is subservient to authority of our bureaucrats. Endless hassles at the threshold are certainly indicators of people still kept in tight grip of bureaucracy.
I entreat your goodelf to take pity on people and instruct your officials to work not as per their whims & fancies but in accordance of law of the land.
Hoping acknowledgement and some tangible action.
Surinder Pal, Advocate,
Chamber No. 1029, District Courts Campus,
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