GST free sanitary napkins a great move by the government

Kriti Billore
The Goods and Services (GST) council decided to make sanitary napkins GST free from the year old tax regime on saturday. Minister of Finance Piyush Goyal announced the decision after the 28th meeting of the GST council.  

There are a number of items that are exempted including wooden deities, marble and sal leaves. Goyal also said that in addition to revenue collection, now the GST council will focus on generating jobs also.
All the decisions made on Saturday would be applicable from 27 July.
under GST's regime sanitary napkins are taxed in its 12% slab at present, which faced heavy criticism since the decision was announced. And along with exempting a number of items from GST , the council has brought several other things to lower slabs.

 Delhi High Court had questioned the GST council about the exemption of sanitay napkins, asking "If bindis , sindoor and Kajal are kept out of GST, why can't sanitary napkins, which are very essential items, be exempted?" In 2017.

The high court bench also added that sanitary pads are a necessity for women, and there cannot be any important or valid reaso to tax them and leave other items by listing them in the category of important necessities. The court did not like the absence of women in the 31-member GST Council and expressed its displeasure.

The government, said sanitary napkins, in pre-GST times, attracted concessional excise duty of 6% and 5% VAT and  the total tax on the product was 13.68%. This is the reason why a 12 percent GST on sanitary napkins was imposed.

In July 2018 after the implementation of GST system many  activists had posted sanitary napkins to former finance minister Arun Jaitley's office and demanded an immediate withdrawal of GST on the product. 
 Arun Jaitely called the debate over the GST on sanitary napkins was called "ill- informed"  said that the 12% GST rate was necessary as it safeguarded Indian manufacturers from foreign ones.

 Women and child development minister Maneka Gandhi had also written to Jaitley last year, asking him to provide 100 percent tax exemption to eco-friendly and bio-degradable sanitary napkins under the GST.

Youth Speaks:

Ayush Ojha

This decision makes sanitary napkins more affordable for everyone, I think it is the best decision by the government. As sanitary items are a basic need of a girl, now it will reach more girls and they would not have to use cloth which is very harmful for their health. Many girls do not attend school because of unavailability of sanitary pads, this will help a lot girls and is good for their health too.

Vrinda Singh
Exemption of GST from the sanitary pads is very relieving for the lower class women, because still there are women who are unable to buy pads. If they are available at less cost, it will inspire them to use sanitary pads which are way healthier. This step of government is really appreciable.

Supriya Kujur
Menstruation is a natural process for which sanitary pads are basic necessity. Putting tax on them makes no sense. This is the right decision taken by the government. Exemption of the tax would lower the prices of sanitary napkins they will also be available in rural area, they will also buy and try using them.

Vaibhav Hayaran
I think making sanitary napkins free of GST and making them more accessible is a great move. I think it'll make a huge difference not only in education but also in social life of girls because most of the girls choose to stay at home because of lack facilities and moreover because they use cloth. So even if there are chances of hike in prices of pads, removing taxes is a responsible move.

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