25.08.2022: Printing question paper exempt from GST, but not answer booklet, rules AAR

www.taxo.onlinePrinting stationery items such as question papers, admit cards, pass certificates, ID cards on contract basis for a school board does not attract the goods and services tax (GST). However, printing answer booklets does, the Authority for Advance Rulings (AAR) of Karnataka has said.

The ruling was passed on a petition filed by Bengaluru-based PKS Centre for Learning on GST rates on these items supplied to the Karnataka State Education Examinations Board (KSEB). The applicant proposed to submit a bid in response to the tender floated by KSEEB.

The authority ruled that printing stationery items as cited above constitutes a supply of service to an educational institution and, hence, is exempt from GST.

The AAR observed that according to a circular issued by the government, if the essential character in the supply of printed product is printing, it would be classified as the supply of services and would be exempt from GST. However, if this is not the case, it would be considered as supply of goods and would come under the GST’s purview.

The AAR noted that PKS Centre would be supplying the items such as question papers with the content supplied by the board and, hence, inferred that printing in this case is the ‘principle supply’ to the education institution.

As regards supply of answer booklets and envelopes for packing these booklets, the court ruled that the usage of the products gives it essential characteristic, while printing is an ancillary activity.

Answer booklets are taxable under GST at 12 per cent, whereas envelopes attract 18 per cent.

Source: Business Standard 

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