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GST Council extends returns filing deadline, no decision yet on realty

‘Several States wanted to voice their opinions in person’
The Goods and Services Tax Council on Wednesday decided to hold off on adjusting tax rates on the real estate sector as several States said that they would like to voice their opinions in person rather than through video conference.
The Council will take up the real estate issue again on Sunday. It, however, decided to extend the deadline for filing the GSTR-3B to the midnight of February 22 for most of the country, and February 28 for J&K. “There was a discussion on the Group of Ministers’ report on real estate,” Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said at a press conference following the video-conference meeting with most of the State finance ministers. “Most of the members felt that a decision on this should be taken today.”
“Some members felt that it should be discussed in a physical meeting and a decision should be taken on it after that,” Mr. Jaitley added. “Keeping the idea of consensus in mind, I adjourned the meeting to Sunday so that a physical meeting can be held and the issue can be discussed.”
Consensus building
“It is better to build consensus on key issues on the real estate sector as all previous meetings have achieved the same,” M.S. Mani, senior director at Deloitte India said.
“The real estate sector is critical for all States, hence unanimity in the decision-making process will assist in uniform implementation of the decisions of the GST Council.”
The original deadline for filing the summary GSTR-3B for the month of January was February 20. Given the volume of submissions received, the Council decided to extend this deadline by two days, Mr. Jaitley said.