March 2018
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Offline version for GSTR-4 launched on GST portal
(RNew Delhi, Nov 04, 2017):Flagging off preparation for the filing of GSTR-4, the quarterly return for taxpayers who have opted for Composition Levy, the Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN) introduced an offline tool on the GST Portal for the same.

"GSTR-4 return can be prepared only using the Offline Tool. This has been done to facilitate small businesses who can prepare the same on their own computers as per their convenience. Since they will be working offline, they do not need to be connected to the Internet," said Prakash Kumar, CEO, GSTN.

The offline tool will also allow the taxpayers check final payable amount and save the return for future use. Once they are fully satisfied, they can press a button to create the return file which they will need to upload to the portal. Only for uploading the file, they will need to connect to the internet.

The Offline tool is available on GST portal and can be downloaded by taxpayers and tax consultants.
For the unversed, the composition levy is an alternative method of levy of tax designed for small taxpayers whose turnover is up to Rs. 1 crore (Rs 75 lakh in case of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura and Himachal Pradesh).

The objective of composition scheme is to bring simplicity and to reduce the compliance cost for the small taxpayers. Moreover, it is optional and the eligible person opting to pay tax under this scheme can pay tax at a prescribed percentage of his turnover every quarter, instead of paying tax at the normal rate. Such taxpayers have to file returns once a quarter.

The businesses dealing only in goods can opt for composition scheme. Service providers have been kept outside the scope of this scheme, except those providing restaurant services.

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