CBIC’s Special Drive to Clear Pending GST Registration Applications

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has launched an exclusive drive to clear all the pending applications for GST registration by 30th July 2020. It has also instructed its field offices to ensure that the drive is a success. 

Applications that were pending till 30th June 2020, and not processed till 15th July 2020, will be granted deemed approval. Whereas, the applications received from 1st July 2020 onwards and remaining as pending till 28th July 2020 will be considered as approved on 31st July 2020.

The communication of the GST policy wing was sent by the Board to all principal commissioners and commissioners across various jurisdictions on 17th July 2020. The Board has asked GSTN to share a list of registration applications that got deemed approval during the lockdown period since 25th March 2020 due to any technical glitches. Accordingly, the jurisdictional officers can conduct physical verification of business premises where it is required.

The CBIC has also stated that the three-day window for deemed approval of the registration application would be resumed from 1st August 2020. Due to lockdown and limited staffing, government operations were almost stopped since March 2020. It had also suspended granting of any deemed approvals for GST registration due to the possibility of misuse or unverified approvals.

Also Read: Hand Sanitisers to Attract 18% GST, Says Finance Ministry

The usual processing time for applications is three days to a week. However, it is now taking months together during the lockdown as the government extended it further for over two months till 1st June 2020. 

In one of the clarifications by CBIC in early March 2020 to taxpayers undergoing CIRP, the IRP/RPs had to obtain fresh GST registrations for such companies mandatorily. Delay in granting registration certificate due to lockdown restrained the IRP/RP’s appointed under the IBC law, stalling the revival process for these debt-laden companies.

Several GST compliance including the filing of refund applications and assessments by officers was pushed up to 30th June and recently was further extended up to 31st August 2020. It is pertinent to note that the government had not notified any extension in the time limit to apply for GST registration where it becomes mandatory for a person under the GST law. Due to this imposition, people had to still apply for GST registrations online, while its processing got stuck due to insufficient staffing by the CBIC.

The decision made by the GST policy wing and being implemented by the CBIC is a welcome move as it will help in encouraging businesses to begin their operations since the unlock phase of lockdown has already started. 

For any clarifications/feedback on the topic, please contact the writer at annapoorna.m@cleartax.in

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