18% GST to be levied on ‘parotas’ as they do not fall under the category of ‘ready to eat food preparations’ like ‘roti’ and ‘khakra’

Karnataka Authority of Advance Ruling (Goods and Services Tax):  In the instant application the question was that whether the preparation of “Whole Wheat Parota” and “Malabar Parota”  can attract GST at the rate of 5% under Chapter Heading 1905, the AAR (GST Department) comprising of Ravi Prasad M.P., (Additional Commissioner of Commercial Taxes) and Mashhood- ur- Rehman Farooqui (Joint Commissioner of Central Tax), held that the product “parota” requires further processing for human consumption and is completely different from products like ‘roti’, ‘chapatti’ etc.; furthermore ‘parota’ also falls under the category of ‘food preparations not elsewhere specified or included’, thus the product can be classified under Chapter Heading 2106, upon which 18% GST will be applicable.

The applicant stated that the ‘parota’ is available in ambient and frozen form, with a shelf life of 3-7 days. The ingredients for the product include refined flour, RO purified water, edible vegetable oil, fat and salt. After adding the said ingredients, the product is then subjected to heat on a pan for making it available for consumption. With this description, the applicant contended that the product should be classified under Chapter Heading 1905 under the description of “Khakhra, Plain Chapatti and Roti”.

Perusing the contention and the nature of the product in question, the AAR observed that under Rule 3(c) of the General Rules of Interpretation under the Customs Tariff Act, 1975, where goods are not classifiable under appropriate heading then, the product is to be classified under the heading which occurs last in the numerical order among those headings which equally merit consideration. Since, Heading 2106 occurs last in the numeric order and the impugned product does not fall under any category enumerated in Rule 3(a) and Rule 3(b) General Rules of Interpretation under the Customs Tariff Act, 1975, thus the product ‘parota’ shall fall under Heading 2106 by the virtue of aforementioned Rule 3(c). It was further observed that unlike ‘khakhra’, ‘roti’ and ‘plain chapatti’ which are completely cooked preparations requiring no processing before human consumption and are thus ‘ready to eat food preparations’; the same cannot be said for ‘parota’ which is to be heated before consumption.[ ID Fresh Food (India) Pvt. Ltd., 2020 SCC OnLine Kar AAR-GST 1 , decided on 22-05-2020]

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