GST Impact Affects Cancer Treatment in the State

KOCHI:
The newly implemented tax policy, G.S.T, turns out to be a burden for poor cancer patients. G.S.T taxation affected the plan to import and install Linear Accelerator, latest machinery for cancer treatment, in Ernakulum General Hospital.
More than 2000 cancer patients from five adjoining districts are depending General Hospital for affordable treatment every year. It was P. Rajeev who took initiatives to install Linear Accelerator in General Hospital while he was the Member of Parliament.
The MP funds from Dr. B. Jayasree, Mrinal Miri, H.K. Dua, Dr. Ashok S Ganguly, K.T.S. Tulsi, K.Parasaran and C.P Narayanan were collected to raise a fund of 7 crore rupees to purchase the machine. The hospital managed to get an additional amount of 2.7 crore from the CSR funds of corporate companies like BPCL, Cochin Refinery and Synthite to set up specialized building for operating the machine.
While placing the purchase order, the machine was said to have an import tax of 5%. As per the GST regulations, now the hospital has to pay 20% tax to get the imported machine released from the port.
It is hardly possible for the hospital authority to raise an additional tax amount of 1.4 crore. The hospital will be responsible to pay huge demurrage if the machine is not cleared soon. Thus the GST taxation policy is hindering the scheme to treat patients in the BPL category at a nominal cost.
Ernakulum General Hospital is the only treatment solution for the poor cancer patients in middle Kerala. General hospital provides treatments including radiotherapy facilities completely free of cost with the help of various government schemes.
Private hospitals can afford to spend the huge GST tax amount to import Linear Accelerator which can be counted on input tax credit, whereas it is not applicable for the government hospitals where they provide treatment free of cost. P. Rajeev has demanded the central government to solve this defect in the implementation of GST Taxation policy so as to create a favorable condition for better cancer treatment in the state.

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