Union Budget: Exempt health industry from GST
With the Union budget to be announced on Feb 1, experts are hopeful that lawmakers won't disappoint; say medical services must be made affordable
The hope of being exempted from the Goods And Service Tax (GST) is on the minds of most service industries that are anxiously awaiting the Union budget to be announced next week.
Most experts, however, claimed that the need of the hour was to ensure that the healthcare industry was kept out of the purview of GST.
Dr PM Bhujang, president of the Association of Hospitals, a body that was founded in the interest of not-for-profit charitable hospitals, said, "Hospitals should be allowed to claim a refund of GST as it would help the healthcare industry become affordable. Additionally, charitable hospitals should be exempted from GST/central excise/service tax on supply of disposable, medicines implants, stents and lenses, so that poor patients can be provided free medical services."
Meanwhile, with the declining air quality across the country, air purifier companies are also hoping that the Centre will temporarily exempt them from GST. "The deteriorating air quality situation has been leading to several health issues," said Girish Bapat, director, west and south Asia region of air purifying company, Blueair. "Many studies in the past have proved that indoor air quality can be five times more polluted than outdoor air. Considering that people spend 90 per cent of their time indoors, air purifiers should be made more affordable. The government must work together with health authorities and city lawmakers to make this possible."
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