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The Goods and Services Tax has eased the process of indirect taxation considerably since its introduction in India in 2017. However, despite the relative simplification in regards to the previous tax regime, it’s still in the nascent stages. Hence, there is still some degree of blurriness concerning its functioning among the business community in India.

A business, in due course of its operations, has to deal with an array of GST forms to comply with its many guidelines and ensure they reap its full benefits. One of these is the GSTR 2A Form. Understanding what it is, its significance, and how it fits in the GST ecosystem is, thus, imperative.

What is GSTR 2A?

It is a purchase-related document that the GST portal provides to each business registered with it. The GSTR 2A is generated automatically when a business’s seller or counterparty uploads the GSTR 1 and 5 Forms. It details the purchases a company makes in a particular month, thereby noting all invoice details.

However, it is a read-only document, serving only to inform a business of its sellers’ invoice details. The concerned enterprise should verify this form and rectify any discrepancy in it before filing their returns on the GST portal as GSTR 2.

How is GSTR 2A generated?

The GST portal auto-populates GSTR 2A standing on information available from a business’s sellers or counterparties’ returns per the following forms –

  • GSTR 1
  • GSTR 5
  • GSTR 6
  • GSTR 7
  • GSTR 8

It’s generated in these cases mentioned below –

  • When a seller (registered resident) uploads transaction details in the GSTR 1 Form.
  • When a seller (non-resident) uploads transaction details in the GSTR 5 Form.
  • When the Input Service Distributor submits the GSTR 6 Form.
  • When a counterparty files the GSTR 7 & 8 Forms, noting the TDS and TCS details

Verification of GSTR 2A is necessary to file the GSTR 2 Form. However, in some cases, the seller might defer their filing of GSTR 1. In that case, the concerned business will need to populate necessary details when filing their GST returns manually. And to ensure consistency in information recording, the details submitted by a seller in GSTR 1 will reflect in such business’s GSTR 2A in the next month.

For instance, suppose one is filing their GST returns in August, and their seller uploads GSTR 1 of August in September. Thence, such business will need to fill in relevant information manually in GSTR 2 of August. And, such details as submitted by the seller will show in the GSTR 2A of September.

How to File GSTR 2A?

Since it is a read-only document that’s auto-populated based on other forms, a business does not need to file it. However, businesses need to accept it, reject it, modify it, or defer its acceptance if such an organisation finds any discrepancy in the invoice details that its seller submitted in GSTR 1.

Also, since it’s generated automatically, there’s no GSTR 2A due date in question. Nevertheless, if any information in that form requires modification, businesses shall do so in GSTR 2. And the due date for that is between 11th and 15th of a month immediately following the month for which such GST return is filed.

How to View GSTR 2A?

In order to view this return form, individuals need to follow the steps mentioned below –

Step 1: Visit the official GST portal.

Step 2: Log in with necessary credentials.

Step 3: Click on “Services” on the dashboard.

Step 4: Click on “Returns” and then “Returns Dashboard”.

Step 5: It will show the “File Returns” page, where one needs to fill the “Financial Year” and “Return Filing Period” and then click on Search.

Step 6: Following that, one needs to click on the “View” option under GSTR 2A.

Step 7: It will then show the GSTR 2A – Auto-drafted details page.

The concerned individual or organisation can view the featured information in this form by selecting relevant titles.

Individuals can also choose to download this document for future reference by selecting the pertinent option in Step 6.

What are the Details Featured in GSTR 2A?

It includes seven headings, as per the government’s mandate. These are –

1. GSTIN – The 15-digit GSTIN of such business

2. Name of the Taxpayer – The registered person’s legal name and trade name (if any)

PART A

3. Invoice details of inward supplies that a business received from a registered person, except supplies that attract a reverse charge. It is presented in the following format.

GSTIN of SupplierInvoice detailsRate Taxable ValueAmount of TaxPlace of Supply (Name of State/UT)
NumberDateValueIntegrated taxCentral taxState/UT taxCess

4. Inward supplies on which the reverse charge attracts tax. It’s presented in a similar format as 3.

5. All Debit/Credit notes and any modification received thereof in the current period. It’s illustrated in the following format.

Details of original documentRevised details of document or details of original Debit/Credit noteRateTaxable ValueAmount of taxPlace of Supply (Name of State/UT)
GSTINNo. DateGSTIN No.DateValueIntegrated taxCentral taxState/UT taxCess

Part B

6. IDS credit received (including amendments thereof) – It is applicable for Input Service Distributors and its branches. This title shows the credit of ISD and any modification in the current tax period.

Part C

7. TDS and TCS credit received (including amendments thereof) – it is applicable for businesses involved in TDS transactions or selling online via an e-commerce platform.

What is the Relationship between GSTR 2A and GSTR 3B?

GSTR 3B is a self-declared return summarising the ITC a business is eligible to receive. As per guidelines, taxpayers are required to carry out GSTR 2A reconciliation with this form. It is necessary to ensure a business is not evading any tax or receiving credit above what they are actually eligible for. In case a taxpayer is found to claim excess ITC, they shall repay it with interest. Failing to comply can result in fines and other penalties.

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