Scientists criticize GST hike on scientific equipment
- Several scientists have expressed displeasure with Centre’s decision to increase GST rates on scientific equipment.
- Recently GST Council approved changes to rates on various goods and services.
- This included a decision to do away with concessional GST rate of 5% applicable to scientific equipment and increase it to anywhere between 12% and 18%.
- This would mean 6%-12% hit on research funds available to laboratories for their expenditure.
- Union Ministry of Science and Technology had a drop of 3.9% in its budget in the 2022-23 Union Budget.
- In April 2021, scientists from labs all over the country signed a petition pointing out that “Atmanirbhar Bharat” policy had made import of scientific equipment and reagents a tedious and time-consuming process.
- It requires approval at the level of Secretaries of Ministries or departments.
Prelims take away
- GST Council
- Union Budget - Constitutional provisions