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GST Council Grants Tax Relief to Students in Private Hostels

By Neeraj Kumar
Patna: In a significant move during the 53rd GST Council meeting, students staying in private hostels received a major relief as the council decided to grant a tax exemption. This exemption applies to students living in hostels outside educational institutions, provided the rent is less than Rs 20,000 per month. This decision is expected to lead to a reduction in hostel rents for thousands of students in Patna and millions across Bihar.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman highlighted that students residing within educational institutions already enjoy GST exemptions. This new exemption extends to those living outside educational institutions, benefitting both students and the working class, as long as they stay for a minimum of 90 days. The GST Council has recommended this exemption for hostels charging up to Rs 20,000 per student per month. Many students in Bihar, including those in Patna, now anticipate lower hostel rents due to this policy.

Kundan, a hostel operator in Patna, mentioned that there are no hostels in Patna with rents as high as Rs 20,000 per month. The average rent in the city ranges from two to three thousand rupees per month. Consequently, most hostels in Patna will fall outside the purview of GST. For example, the average rent for a double room in a Patna hostel is Rs 2,400, accommodating two students, which amounts to Rs 1,200 per student. A single room rent is about Rs 2,000, providing an affordable option for students to study in a private setting.

The author in Patna based journalist


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