On Thursday, the Delhi High Court quashed PVL’s plea to the Center for a directive on the list of essential ingredients for masks and sanitizers during the Covid-19 epidemic. The application sought directions to reduce GST on these items.
Chief Justice D.N. A bench of Patel and Justice Pritik Jalan said there was no reality in PIL and it did not show that masks and sanitizers were not easily available or sold by traders at too high a price so that they could get the necessary materials. Stay tuned.
The High Court said that it is a matter of policy to decide which items are listed under the Essential Products Act. This court is too slow to interfere in the policy decisions of the Government of India.
The bench said that the inclusion of essential commodities under the Act is a complex decision and depends on various aspects like availability and price. If the government believes that masks and sanitizers are readily available, there is no need to control the supply of such items.
The court said it would not intervene in reducing the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on these two items unless it was too unfair and nothing like that was seen in the case.
The bench said that since the petitioner felt that the rate of GST was too high, it could not be a reason for reduction. This writ petition has no veracity and has therefore been dismissed.
The petition was filed by a man named Gaurav Yadav, who said that the Center had issued a notification in March 2020 after putting masks and sanitizers on the required list, but it was effective till June 30, 2020. He said traders are likely to see prices rise.