Keeping in mind their previous tax regime, the Central Indian government was motivated to levy taxes as well as duties on the manufacturing and rendering of services. Alternatively, State governments were empowered to levy taxes on the sale of goods intra-state. This is the case in which the movement of goods happens within the state’s jurisdictions. In cases where the sale of goods involves their movement across different states, the Centre levied a tax on such sales. Revenue that was collected was to be shared between the Centre and the State.
Hence, any individual involved in the movement of goods needed to be equipped with a variety of documents such as challan, invoice, road permits, an e-way bill, or more, all of which needed to be produced at the State’s respective check-post for the purpose of inspection. Accordingly, the e-way bill and its rules under the goods and service tax laws of India came into existence. What are the current rules around e-way bills in India?
1. GST E-way Bill Rules for Inspection and Documentation
According to GST way bill rules, the person in charge or the transporter of a conveyance needs to be carrying the following documents:
- A physical copy of the e-way bill number or the e-way bills.
- A bill of supply or invoice or delivery challan
At the respective place of verification, an official officer can intercept any vehicle so they can verify the e-way bill number or e-way bills in its physical form for all inter and intrastate movement of goods. On any grounds regarding suspicion of tax evasion, the officer has the right to physically inspect the vehicle once they have obtained the necessary approval from any authorized officer or commissioner.
As per e-way bill rules, once the inspection is carried out, the officer should take the initiative to record any details about the inspection of goods in Part A of Form GST EWB 03. This should be done within 24 hrs of inspection with the final report recorded in Part B of Form GST EWB 03 in a timeframe of 3 days since the inspection. In case one’s vehicle is detained for a period that exceeds 30 minutes, a transporter can choose to complain by uploading relevant details in Form GST EWB 04.
2. GST E-way Bill Rules for E-way Bill Format
There are also rules by which the e-way bill should be formatted. As of now, the e-way bills comprises of 2 parts — Part A and Part B.
The first part or part A in an e-way bill in Form EWB 01 includes categories like details about the consignment such as the place of delivery, GSTIN of the recipient, Challan or Invoice number, the value of goods, HSN Code, one’s reason for transportation, and, finally, the transport document number. The transport document number can indicate either one of the Railway Receipt Number, Goods Receipt Number, Bill of Lading Number, or Airway Bill Number. In Part B of Form EWB 01, one is required to mention the vehicle number in which goods are transported. The transporter will file Part B of the e-way bill in the common portal.
Since e-way bill rules are implemented with care, they are often expected to significantly alter the scenario for logistics in India. They also improve the cross-border movement of goods, making for much more seamless business activity for most businesses across the country. You can learn more about the e-way bills, particularly how to avoid common e-way bill errors, on Finserv MARKETS, which is essential if you operate a business in India. You can also instantly avail of a business loan only on Finserv MARKETS, which offers its clients immediate loan disbursal for amounts that can scale up to Rs. 30 Lakhs.