New registrations under goods and service tax (GST) have been getting delayed to as much as 60 days or more during the lockdown period, compared to the regular turn-around time of about a week, said industry insiders.
While several applicants have faced delays going up to a few weeks, some of the applications filed before the lockdown began on March 25 are yet to be issued registration numbers. The issue, which is being faced by taxpayers across different states, has been raised by many businesses with the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC).
Besides new businesses starting up, interim resolution professionals (IRPs) or resolution professionals managing companies undergoing corporate insolvency resolution have been grappling with getting new registrations. Rules mandate IRPs to file for fresh registrations in all states where the company was earlier registered.
“Delay in grant of registration is acting as an active restraint for IRP/RP’s appointed under IBC laws, slowing the revival process for debt laden companies,” said Rajat Mohan, senior partner at AMRG Associates.
Last week, CBIC enabled a separate registration facility for IRPs on the GST portal.
According to officials, the delay in issuing new registration numbers has been due to far fewer number of tax officers across various jurisdictions having remote or virtual private network (VPN) access to process the applications.
“In many places the jurisdictional officers of the area where a business is situated are working from home, and may not have VPN access or digital signature certificates,” said an official, asking not to be named.
GST Network had said in April that it had provided secured access to over 1700 tax officers in 18 states and union territories to work remotely. Over 10,000 new registrations were issued between March 25 and April 3, it had said. GSTN did not respond to ET’s queries on new registrations post this period.
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