Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal on Wednesday announced that value-added tax (VAT) refund would henceforth be paid online to industrialists on the basis of a star rating system.
Announcing this following a meeting with senior BJP ministers Madan Mohan Mittal and Chunni Lal Bhagat, government's adviser Tikshan Sud and trader board's former chairman Narottam Ratti, Sukhbir said the refund would be transferred into the accounts of traders/industrialists on the basis of their self-assessment from the corpus created by collecting advance tax.
Sukhbir said the funds in the newly-evolved corpus would be first used to clear the VAT refund. At the end of the month, if any funds were left in this corpus, they would be transferred to the consolidated fund of the state. Monthly collections are expected to be to the tune of Rs 200 crore and these would be used exclusively to clear monthly refund of around Rs 100 crore.
The highest taxpayer would be adjudged as a "five-star payee" as part of the state's tax collection policy; VAT refund would be paid to the person within 15 days. VAT refund to four, three and two-star-rated traders would be paid online within 25, 35 and 45 days, respectively.
"The criteria for such ratings would be determined on various parameters, including the standing of the company, imports, exports, general turnover, past records and the self-assessment case file," he said.
He also announced that 200 traders would be awarded for paying the highest amount of taxes in various categories during the unveiling of the traders' policy on November 14.
Welcoming the deputy CM's move, Madan Mohan Mittal said various measures taken by the SAD-BJP government would not only give big relief to traders but also make the entire VAT procedure hassle-free.