Stop the abolition of GST Audit
Stop the abolition of GST Audit
Finance Bill, 2021 has abolished the requirement of GST audit from the FY 2020-21. GST audit was an audit in which we were checking whether all the requirements of the GST law has been complied or not. Due to non-requirement of GST audit, the taxpayers will be at more risk as there will be no surety whether the returns have been filled properly including all the details required to be disclosed and whether any provision has not been missed to be complied in the era of continuous amendments in GST. Abolition of GST audit will lead to increase in the departmental assessments and scrutinies and will lead to additional burden of high interest and penalties on the taxpayers in the assessments. Thus abolition of GST audit is not a good sign for the taxpayers.
Moreover, currently in the market, there are many people who are not CAs but are filing GST returns. Even most of the advocates are also filing GST returns. These people are generally charging less fees compared to a CA and capturing the taxpayers towards them. We come to know at the time of GST audit that most of such people filing GST returns of taxpayers do not know even many of the provisions of the GST law. They are just uploading the summaries of purchase and sales without taking care of many provisions of GST. There are lots of such mistakes being found during the GST audit which are being rectified by a CA during the audit and thus taxpayer is being saved to a large extent. Now due to non- requirement of GST audit, such people will themselves prepare annual returns and reconciliation statements at lower fees and get it self-certified by the taxpayers. Thus there is a huge risk lying on the head of taxpayers at the time of assessments and scrutinies which they are not even aware of.
Originally GST audit was to be conducted by taxpayers having turnover of Rs. 2 crores, then this limit was enhanced to Rs. 5 crores and now they are abolishing the audit requirement itself. GST audit is a major source of income for most of the small-sized and middle-sized CA firms in the country. Even in case of GST appeals, a chartered accountant can go only upto the Tribunal level and not in the High Court and Supreme Court, in spite of having better knowledge in this field. Moreover, the advocates have already entered this field by filing GST returns, GST appeals and even they have the authority to go to High Court and Supreme Court for GST appeals. Even the tax audit limit has been now enhanced to Rs. 10 crores in certain circumstances. Thus, looking to all such changes being brought in the recent time, it seems that the role of the chartered accountants is being constantly being reduced and it is a danger to our community. Already the fresh chartered accountants are preferring more towards the jobs and avoiding to come to practice due to non-availability of work. The fresh chartered accountants who are starting their practice generally get small work like GST and income tax filings and audits which are their requirements to run their survival in their initial practice period.
Thus, I request the whole CA fraternity to unite and protest against the abolition of the GST audit and represent to the Finance Ministry for deletion of the new clause of the Finance Bill, 2021 requiring abolition of GST audit.
Sign my petition, asking the Finance Ministry for deletion of clause of abolition of GST audit and asking the ICAI for recommending the same to the Finance Ministry.