e-Way Bill: Making transportation easier

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  • E-way Bill

e-Way Bill is not novice term since implementation is enough discussions after implementation of Goods and Service Tax law. In previous era of VAT and CST, way bills were filled physically with the concerned authorities of the State. Transportation of Goods was nightmare for the transporters and suppliers due to given mechanism. Under GSR regime, the movement of goods will be supported by the Way Bill in electronic format to eliminatedrawbacks of previous system with implementation of unified system.

The system unavailability to generate and administer the e-Way Bill has deferred implementation of mechanism under GST regime. The system was under trial sun since 1st January, 2018 with proposal to nationwide implementation on 1st April, 2018.In the latest meeting of GST Council approved the nationwide implementation announcing implementation in phased manner for intra-state movement of goods before June 1, 2018. The goal to implement the hassle free online system has faced many hurdles itself but which is now ready for successful deployment. The council has also made major improvements for the mechanism to be implemented.The article provides overview of the e-Way Bill mechanism and its seamless practise.

e-Way Bill: Fundamental and requirement

The filing and Generation of e-Way Bill is compulsory for movement of goods from one State to another (interstate) and within State (intrastate) for various states, when notified by concerned State authority. The common goal for implementation of mechanism is making transportation easier forthe transporters and suppliers, both through nationwide unified system in India.

E-Way Bill is an electronic document generated online on portal deployed by the Central Government, which will support the movement of goods from one state to another or the intrastate movement as applicable. For the purpose of e-Way Bill generation, transportation and movement of goods refers to rejection, returns, goods sent for repairs and maintenance and material sent on job work with delivery challan. This clearly implies generation of bill for inwards supplied of goods.

The interested parties for this purpose are supplier, recipient, transporters and tax officers are the interested party with respect to goods transportation and generation of e-Way Bill among which suppliers and transporters both will require to be registered on the e-Way Bill portal.

If the consignment value transported is in excess of amount of Rs 50,000, generation of e-Way Bill is mandatory for the selected category of tax payers. At present, the value considered for this purpose will be of individual consignment being transported. During a single conveyance, if the value of individual consignment is less than Rs 50,000/-, the need of e-Way Bill generation does not arises even if the value of total conveyance is more than Rs 50,000/-. For this purpose, the value of exempted goods is excluded from value of the consignment.

Mode of transportation:

Generation of e-Way bill is mandatory for every mode of transportation including airway, waterways, and roadways. However, railway has been exempted for this purpose subject to conditions specified. Further, public conveyance mode is included as a mode of transport for which the responsibility of generating e-way bill.

Time period for the recipient to communicate his acceptance or rejection of the consignment would be the validity period of the concerned e-way bill or 72 hours, whichever is earlier.

For mode of transportation being railways, airways and waterways, the e-way bill can be generated even after commencement of movement of goods.

Person responsible for generation of e-Way Bill:

  • A Registered Person:

Generation of e-Way Bill will be mandatory for movement of goods amounting more than Rs 50,000/-. Bill can also generated voluntary consignment value up to 50,000/-. The value of goods will be referred as consignment value and that includes the taxes paid under GST and Cess charged.

  • The Recipient of Goods:

When the goods are supplied by an unregistered supplier to a person registered under Goods and Service Tax, the recipient will be responsible for generation of e-Way Bill.

  • The transporter of Goods:

The transporter of goods will be responsible to generate the bill when the goods are supplied through air, road or rail and the supplier has not generated the bill. This refers to the cases where the individual consignment by the supplier does not exceed the threshold limit but the value of consignment exceeds Rs 50,000 in total.

  • For Public Transport:

The responsibility of e-Way Bill generation of under this mode of transportation will be of consignor or consignee.

For the goods transported on account of job-work, the registered job worker can also generate e-way bill.Consignor can also authorize the transporter, courier agency and e-commerce operator to fill PART-A of e-way bill on his behalf.

Generation of e-Way Bill:

E-Way Bill can be generated using the online portal assigned for this purpose in Form GST EWB-01. The bill will be produced in two parts requiring disclosure of different details with respect to ownership of goods and its movement. The details and information of receiver of goods will be furnished in Part A of the Bill.  Whereas in Part B the name of transporter, GR Number, Number of Vehicle through which the goods are being transported.

The generation of bill will be final and non-editable after its generation. While generating the e-way Bill, if the number of vehicle is uncertain at, it can be entered afterwards.

Movement of goods that covers distance up to 50 km from place of consignor to place of transporter does not require filing of Part B of bill. They have to generate Part A only.

Generating consolidated e-Way Bill is allowed when the transporter is carrying multiple consignmentsin single transporting vehicle in Form GST EWB 02 (refer bullet point 3 above).

The details of e-Way bill generated must be communicated to the recipient of goods, who will further required to convey the acceptance or rejection of the consignment covered by e-Way bill. The acceptance or rejection of the consignment should be conveyed within validity period of bill or 72 hours, whichever is earlier.

Information required generating e-Way Bill:
  • Vehicle Number or Id of Transporter for transport of goods through road;
  • For transport of goods through rail, air or ship, ID of transporter and transporter document number with date of documents will be required.
  • Invoice or Bill of Supply or Challan, of the consignment of goods, as the case may be.

On generation of e-Way Bill, unique e-Way Bill Number referred as (EBN) will be allotted to the supplier, recipient and the transporter.

Validity of e-Way Bill generated:

Validity of the e-Way bill generated will depend on the distance to be covered by the vehicle in transit for its delivery. The Bill generated for distance up to 100 km will be valid for 1 day and validity period of 1 day will be added for additional distance of 100 km. When the transit will cover distance of more than 1000 km, it will be valid for a period up to 15 days only. For Over Dimensional Cargo (ODC), extra validity period is provided.

E-Way Bill once generated can be cancelled within 24 hours of the generation, when the goods are not being transported or transported but with details different from that furnished in the bill.

Validity of one day will expire at midnight of the day immediately following the date of generation of e-way bill.

If the goods cannot be transported within the validity period of the e-way bill, the transporter may extend the validity period in case of transhipment or in case of circumstances of an exceptional nature.

Most referred option for generation of e-Way Bill is through common portal assigned by the Central Government. However, the other option is its generation or the cancellation through SMS.

Conclusion:

The objective of e-Way Bill system includes hassle free movement across country, which also allows tracking the movement of consignment. One of the primary aimsincludes prevention of evasion of tax.This will also assist the tax officers for administration and keep an eye on the types and value of goods to be transported throughout the country especially interstate transports.The conveyance once verified by the tax office will not be checked again in any State or Union territory, unless and until, any specific information for the same is received.

About the Author:

Shrijay Sheth
Shrijay, co-founder of LegalWiz.in, is best known for his business acumen. On this platform, he shares his experiences backed by a strong understanding of digital commerce businesses. His more than a decade-long career includes a contribution to some of the highly successful startups and eCommerce brands across the globe.

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