India could now be looking at doing away completely with permit and inspector raj for vehicular traffic as it looks to create seamless road transport connectivity and build on the speedier transport facilitated by the goods and services tax (GST). “The (GST) Council has accepted the recommendations and now respective departments will implement them,” a government official told ET.
A task force set up by the GST Council last year suggested removal of state and national permits, all forms of checks, including road tax, pollution and fitness certificates. The task force was set up to suggest measures for creating an ecosystem for seamless road transport connectivity.
“With the abolition of value added tax and entry tax, there is no need for a permit system to restrict the movement of vehicles in a state… Hence, state permits, national permits can be abolished,” the committee said in its report, which was taken up by the GST Council on Saturday.
GST was rolled out on July 1, 2017, replacing multiple central and state taxes with one levy to allow seamless movement of goods nationally.
All check posts to manage entry of goods in a state were removed leading to faster movement of goods. Though the entry check posts for goods have come down, truckers and commercial transporters still face entry barriers as they are stopped for other checks.
The panel has suggested introduction of a fitness certificate with one-year validity, which would come topped with road tax, permits and pollution checks. It has mooted integration of e-way bill with regional transport data base giving all information about a vehicle, including fitness, pollution and permtis.
An e-way bill may be generated only after the vehicle is found fit as per transport database, called VAHAN, as per the plan. This data base could be expanded to include all details of a vehicle, including pollution under control certificate and national permits. The ministry of road transport and highways will mandate fitment of Vehicle Tracking System devices using GPS technology on all goods transport vehicles, the report said.
It has suggested that all enforcement agencies record every instance of inspection or checking and the e-way bill system could be used to create identities for all department to enable them to create verification reports.