Golden Temple paid Rs 2 crore as GST on langar items in 7 months
After the implementation of the Goods and Service Tax (GST) in seven months, the holiest shrine of the Sikhs, the Golden Temple, has shelled out Rs 2 crore in form of GST for purchasing ration for langar (free community kitchen) which runs at the temple complex and parshad which is given to devotees which is the largest community kitchen in the world feeding freshly cooked food to 50,000 devotees on weekdays and over one lakh on weekends and festivals.
Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) spokesperson Diljit Singh Bedi said that is last seven months from July 1, 2017 to January 31 this year the SGPC has paid Rs 2 crore as GST on purchase of different items required for preparing the langar at the Golden Temple. “The SGPC has been fighting for getting exemption from the GST on langar items as it has written many letters to the union government and GST council and also it’s deputations also met the concerned officials many times. But till date nothing has happened all the efforts have gone in vain,’’ said Bedi.
However, Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley had termed this claim misleading as he had been saying, “No GST has been imposed on the food served in langar in gurdwaras.’’ But the SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal stated that the statement of Jaitely is misleading. “The statement is far from the truth and facts. So, this is totally wrong. The GST is being charged on the purchase of langar items,” said Longowal.
Earlier, Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal has written to Finance Minister Arun Jaitely to exempt all purchases made by SGPC for langar from the GST.