Your guide to GST : Know which items will go tax free and which won’t here

GSTAn Indian consumer goods trader shows letters GST representing "Goods and Services Tax" (GST)at his shop in Hyderabad on August 3, 2016. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said India was on the cusp of its biggest tax reform since independence ahead of a vote in parliament later August 3, on a new national sales tax. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) will replace a patchwork of central and state levies on goods and services and is one of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's biggest reforms since taking power in May 2014 . / AFP PHOTO / NOAH SEELAM

The Narendra Modi government will roll-out GST on July 1, bringing in dynamic changes to the Indian economy. Are you prepped?

Cocktail Zindagi Network


The government is set to roll out Goods And Services Tax from July 1, 2017. While the tax rates fall in these five categories  0%, 5%, 12%, 18%, 28% – do you know which items are going to get costlier and which cheaper?

Gold and rough diamonds however, are an exception and do not fall under the current rate slabs. They will be taxed at 3% (gold) and 0.25%(rough diamonds) respectively.

A total of 1211 items have been categorised under various tax slabs, majority of them being under the tax slab of 18%.




The food items that fall under this category are things like milk and milk products like curd, buttermilk, eggs, fresh meat, chicken, natural honey, bread, flour, besan, bread, salt, vegetables, hulled cereal grains, Palmyra jiggery etc. Other stationery items like printed books, newspapers, children’s drawing and colouring books, stamps, judicial papers etc. are exempted. Cosmetic items like kajal, human hair products, bindis, bangles, sindoor etc. will attract no tax.

Jute, handloom items, bone and horn cores, bone grist etc. are items that have 0% GST.


Hotels and lodges with tariff below ₹1000 will fall under this slab. Grandfathering services (services that were exempt before) continue to be so.



Apparel items below ₹1000, footwear below ₹500, fish fillets, packaged food items, skimmed milk powder, branded paneer, frozen vegetables, coffee, tea, spices, pizza bread, rusk, sabudana, kerosene, coal, medicines, stent, lifeboats, kites etc. fall under this slab.


Transportation and small restaurant services fall in here.



Goods like animal fat, sausage, fruit juices, bhutia, namkeen, Ayurvedic medicines, tooth powder, agarbatti, colouring books, picture books, umbrella, sewing machine, cellphones are some of the items that fall under this tax slab.

Other items that fall here are spoons, forks, ladles, skimmers, cake servers, fish knives, tongs, Spectacles, corrective, Playing cards, chess board, carom board and other board games, like ludo etc.


Lotteries, non-ac hotels, work contracts, business class air tickets etc. fall here.



Items like envelopes, tampons, note books, steel products, printed circuits, camera, speakers and monitors, aluminium foil, weighing machinery [other than electric or electronic weighing machinery], printers [other than multifunction printers], electrical transformer, CCTV, optical fiber, bamboo furniture, swimming pools, footwear costing more than ₹500, bidi patta, biscuits (all categories), flavoured refined sugar, pasta, cornflakes, pastries and cakes, preserved vegetables etc., fall under this tax slab.


Telecom, IT, financial, restaurant inside 5 star hotels, hotels with tariffs ranging from ₹2,500 – ₹7500 etc. fall under this tax slab.



ATM, vending machines, vacuum cleaner, aerated water, paint, deodorants, shaving creams, after shave, hair shampoo, dye, sunscreen, wallpaper, ceramic tiles, water heater, dishwasher, weighing machine, washing machine. bidis, shavers, hair clippers, automobiles, motorcycles, aircraft for personal use, chewing gum, molasses, chocolate not containing cocoa, waffles and wafers coated with chocolate, pan masala etc., are taxed the highest.


Private-run lotteries authorised by the states, hotels with room tariffs above  ₹7,500, 5-star hotels, race club betting, cinema are some services falling under the highest tax slab.


There are some goods that fall in two categories of tax rates.

Photo: Times Of India

Heer Khant
Heer Khant

Traveller | Writer | Photographer | Maverick | Social Worker | Lawyer | A freedom-loving woman for whom words are like wings to her soul. She believes in aliens, hates boundaries and lives like the first human on Earth.

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