The Union government’s decision to charge ayurveda products, under the proposed GST tax regime has left Baba Ramdev fuming. Government has levied 12% tax on ayurveda products under the Good and Service Tax (GST). Government claims that there will be less tax burden on Ayurveda products. But taxing Ayurveda products at 12% has made Baba unhappy.
Speaking to My Medical Mantra, SK Tijarawala, spokesperson of Patanjali Ayurveda expressed his strong displeasure. SK Tijarawala said, “Where is ‘Acche Din’ now? ‘Acche Din’ means good health. But without good health and good living there will not be ‘Acche Din’.”
Tijarawala further added, “We are in process of writing to the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. They should lower the tax rate to 5% immediately. Ayurveda should be accessible to the common man; we are trying to reach to the grassroots level.”
Government should promote ayurveda products, and try to make them affordable to the common man, instead of doing this they have levied 12% under GST. This is completely insensitive to put a road block on herbal and ayurvedic products, added SK Tijarawala spokesperson of the Patanjali Ayurveda.
Ayurveda products are currently attracting 5% tax. Patanjali sells toothpaste, shampoo, face wash, soap and numerous other products based on Ayurveda.
Government claims, there will be lesser tax burden in case of medicaments, including, Unani, Siddha, Homeopathic or Bio-chemic systems also. Medicaments, in general, attract 6% central excise duty and 5% VAT. Further on, CST, octroi, entry tax, etc. are also applicable in general. At these rates, the present total tax incidence works out to more than 13%. As against this, the proposed GST rate on medicines, including ayurvedic medicines, is 12%.
Apart from Baba Ramdev, a number of Ayurvedic medicine practitioners, are unhappy with the government’s decision.
“We need to reduce the liabilities on Indian medicine. We should do everything to promote these medicines. This decision will falter the cause of ayurveda,” said Dr Deviprasad Rao an Ayurveda doctor from Mumbai.