After implementing the Goods and Services Tax from 8th July 2017, Jammu and Kashmir is now also planning to abolish toll tax.
“It goes against the spirit of GST. Most traders have sought the abolition of toll tax. It also impacts consumers. We will try and take up it up in the next meeting of the Cabinet,” said Ajay Nanda, Minister of State of Finance, Jammu and Kashmir.
A toll tax is levied on vehicles as well as goods including consumables entering and leaving the State. This can be as low as ₹1 per load of bread, or as high as ₹4,000 per quintal of cigarettes. Similarly, the toll rates on vehicles also vary. The State earned over ₹3,000 crore from toll tax last fiscal, according to official data.
Toll, mandi charges and fee on vehicle entry into States are not subsumed in the new indirect tax law recently implemented by the Government. These will continue to be charged by local bodies or state governments.
However, opposition parties as well as traders’ unions have sought that the toll be abolished as it will work as a tax on tax and will hike prices of goods coming into the State.
The removal of toll tax would also mean smoother movement of goods across the State borders.
GST was implemented in Jammu and Kashmir nearly a week after its July 1 launch across the rest of the country.
On July 6, President Pranab Mukherjee gave his assent to the Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) Amendment Order, 2017. Completing its roll out, the President on July 8 promulgated two Ordinances for extension of Central and Integrated GST to the State.