Clarification. The Finance Ministry has issued a clarification on the taxation of temple trusts:
The goods and services tax (GST), however, is still applicable to purchases made by temples, such as ghee, fruits, turmeric and oil, at 5-12 per cent. The purchase of puja samagri as well as sale of prasadam is not taxed under GST. Similarly, gurudwaras expect GST to put an additional burden on their langar seva.
However, this does not discount the fact that Hindu temples are the only religious institutions that continue to pay tax on income and are controlled by the government.
India's latest tax reform, the goods and services tax (GST), doesn't spare our temples. A hundred and seventy-one temples in Andhra Pradesh with an income of over Rs 20 lakh will come under the GST, reported The Deccan Herald. The donations made to these temples will come under the purview of the new tax regime.
Of the 23,834 temples in the state, 45 temples come under the income bracket of Rs 1 crore, 63 temples under the income of up to Rs 25 crore and seven temples with more than Rs 25 crore annual income, including the country’s richest, Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams.
Temples are the only religious institutions that are taxed, and many hoped that the GST would exempt our temples just like any other religious institution. However, that's far from being the case.
Also Read: “Swarajya” For Hindu Temples
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