0% GST for elder care homes & senior residences in India
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The percentage of population in the senior citizen category is amongst the fastest growing globally and India is no exception. This is primarily owing to improvement in healthcare and increased in life expectancy. Yet, there is a huge and ever growing gap between services available for senior citizens in our country vis-a-vis others. Many of the present government's successful programs such as LPG distribution seek better health for people, which will result in growth of the senior citizen populace.
While GST is welcome, it is indeed unfortunate that the eldercare homes, senior living residences and non-residential services for elders are clubbed along with real estate, under the provisions of GST. These services attract 18% GST currently, i.e at the same rate as real estate and other property or hospitality related services. Presently such facilities are extremely few in the country, there is a strong need to encourage them. These services, although can be commercially driven at times have significant impact on the society as a whole. In any case whatsoever, they neither qualify as medical services by a hospital nor are they nowhere near real estate services. This point cannot be overstated and is but obvious.
It is therefore humbly prayed, that eldercare homes, senior living residences and non-residential services for elders are brought under the 0% (Zero per cent) tax bracket. Consequently, it will encourage setting up of such facilities and also make the services affordable for senior citizens who pay either from their savings or pensions. The likely impact on the exchequer will be minimal (an estimate can be prepared on request) since these facilities are very few in the country at this point of time.
This would be the least one must do collectively to express gratitude to seniors in our Nation, including your own parents.
Trust you will appreciate.
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