Toyota Fortuner
A Toyota Fortuner 4WD vehicle on display at the Auto Expo 2012 in New Delhi (Representational image) | Photo: Graham Crouch | Bloomberg
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New Delhi: The Modi government has put a price ceiling on vehicles that can be bought from the Canteen Stores Department (CSD), taking away high-end and popular SUVs that personnel of the Indian Army, Navy and the Air Force bought from these canteens.

Gone is the Toyota Fortuner, the Ford Endeavour, the Jeep Compass and other four-wheel drives such as the Mahindra Scorpio and even the Tata Safari Storm. Only the base model of the Mahindra XUV 500 is now available in the military canteens.

The changes are part of new rules in place since 1 June.

Under these rules, high-end sedans such as the Skoda Octavia, Skoda Superb and seven of the eight models of Corolla Altis are also off the shelf.

All popular hatchbacks, however, are still available and so are the mid-range SUVs such as the Hyundai Creta and Ford Ecosport. Even here, military personnel will not be able to buy the top end model of the Creta.


Also read: Indian armed forces upset as Modi govt imposes curbs on car sales at military canteens


The new rules

A letter issued by the quartermaster general’s branch at the Army Headquarters on 24 May has stated that from 1 June, only vehicles with an engine capacity of up to 2,500 CC and costing up to Rs 12 lakh (excluding GST) will be available at the CSDs for armed forces personnel in the pay level of 10-18.

Graphic: Arindam Mukherjee | ThePrint
Graphic: Arindam Mukherjee | ThePrint

Those in the pay level of 3A to 9 can buy vehicles with a capacity of up to 1,400 CC that cost within Rs 5 lakh.

Before the new rules kicked in, there was no limit on the capacity or price of vehicles that could be bought through the CSDs.

The government has also clamped down on the frequency of purchase, reducing it to one vehicle in eight years from the earlier one in four years. As a result of the change, military personnel can buy one car during service and one after retirement but with the gap of eight years.

Military personnel along with civilians working in the defence establishment rely on the CSD canteens for the purchase of cars and other entities as apart from a Goods and Services Tax (GST) exemption, they get regular cash benefits.


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‘Loss to exchequer’

Official sources in the defence establishment say that Rs 17,000 crore is the annual sanctioned budget for the CSD. It is not part of the defence budget but is drawn from the miscellaneous head.

For products such as cars, the CSD negotiates a price with the dealers before the government steps in with a 50 per cent GST rebate on the reduced price. The 50 per cent rebate is viewed as a loss to the exchequer.

“More car sales in CSD means more loss to the exchequer,” an officer explained. “While there was a 17 per cent decrease in car sales in the country for the 2018-19 fiscal period, there was a 20 per cent increase in car sales through the CSD in the same period.”

He added that last year, car sales were over Rs 6,000 crore, or over one-third of the CSD budget, resulting in the budget itself being overshot. This, the officer said, resulted in a carryover liability of Rs 4,500 crore that is to be paid to car manufacturers.

“The popular belief is that the CSD customers’ money is paid to the car dealer or kept by the CSD but the amount is actually transferred within 48 hours to the Consolidated Fund of India,” the officer said. “Parliament’s approval is required to draw the money from the consolidated fund and this is allotted as part of the budget. The CSD then pitches in with the 50 per cent GST and makes the full payment to dealers after two years.”


Also read: New Navy chief’s first order — no ‘quasi religious’ functions, please, we are the Navy


 

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27 Comments Share Your Views

27 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for supporting faujis.
    They live their lives in daily basis coz they don’t have any idea about their future.
    Whatever they do it’s for their family coz they are always away from them can’t take care of them when their family needed them most.
    Only 2 months in a year if possible they try to live with their family.
    People talk about privilege and facilities but fauji don’t have time to avail those privileges.
    Once in a 3 year or 5 years if they get chance they drive vechile if luckily they get any rural posting where no mall no proper shop or any other even small cities facilities are available.
    In a recent fauzi video they were breaking eggs and juices etc with hammer to make it edible.
    If they have this type of life till the time they are in fauz then for what facilities they will fight for.
    Whoever noticing that retired brig bought car from csd in less price comparatively market did he ask from that brig that sir now in this retirement when your age is almost like my father you are trying to live like my life why
    Coz whole his life he was in border doing fauji duty not able to spend anything on him and lived his life as others do so in his retirement from his all savings trying to buy vechile from canteen so that will live life for what he has dreamt of when he was young.
    Rest politicians are trying to take all benefits and privilege from them one by one and not providing any rights to speak about their pain and how they feel and demoralizing their

  2. Csd was usually provide articals on subsidised rate to defence personnel especially in field area on equal basis irrespective of ranks.presently the criteria changed to lower income and higher income group.D o you think, whose basic pay is more than one lakh are the right person to avail subsidised articals.Govt should banned to avail facilities from csd whose basic pay is one lakh and above.2 ndly vehicle life is fifteen years.From where the lower rank of army purchase the vehicle after the expiry of vehicle life.So everyone who has served into defence forced should be allowed to purchase vehicle on equal interval.3rdly csd account be audited by CAG.on regular basis.Defennce officers should not have blanket power of controlling csd profit

  3. The country has lived on armedforces. Scavenging on their blood and sweat. A person in border shouldn’t take this as a job else on sat and Sundays half the country will be plundered. Its one of the only job where individual are not choosen on reservation but on their merit. So anyone who wants to die for the country can join. None looks at csd or weather tax is paid or its tax free. Btw a merchant navy guy gets 5lak pm and its tax free. So he enjoys everything in the name of bringing foreign currency. Why a soldier takes everything and no representation is because he has been ordered to. Y follow orders because of he doesn’t. The country will crumble. Y he has to seek permission for his own leave or cant roam freely even on Sundays or holidays.. Because he believes someone is thinking about him somewhere. A salute by a kid is ok. But luckily they don’t read the print. Or know the litrates. Or know that ppl talk about money by exchequers but yet V employ CA for tax savings. Everyday we hear about corruption.. Even after 70yrs V have reservation in all courses. And only ias/ips we know is reservation ones. So are P politicians. Army has given us governance which the country couldn’t provide to us citizens. The new cities were once cantonments. The train routes and hard terrains. This discussion is an insult to those soldiers including officers who think seriously about the country. I hope they also think from the exchequers and caste creed point of view. Sadly where they are posted, they don’t have any access to CA and when they come home on chutti.. They are busy looking after the issues they left in last chutti. Buying one car and one house is one of it.

  4. Make the guardians of the country feel like second grade citizens…Thats what all the govts do best!! Kudos to the think tanks who came up with this brilliant idea of making sure the soldiers life remains second grade…In any case he aint doing much for the nation right?? The bright side is along with the realisation of being second grade his moral will also dip. Wow!! Great work done!!

  5. Well Sneha ..we have joined armed forces ..not for money ..it’s passion …well about cars still I can buy …with or without csd ..it doesn’t matter …it’s my money …I still can buy merc or Audi ..even nano …but ordering a cap of 12 lac ..to buy from csd ..a foolish step…they are degrading day by day the morale of forces….this organisation will die its own death ..if it will not spk for itself ..no more young men or women will have passion to join forces ..csd issue is quite small and immaterial to us ..take every thing away ..u cannot take out passion out of us ….Jai hind

  6. Most have jumped on Sneha. Though she was too harsh, what is important that govt provides 50% gst rebate. So in a way if a person wants to buy a Fortuner which costs 30lacs, the benifit he would get would be around 3.25 lacs. So rather than buying it for 30 lacs he/she can buy it for 26.75. So if someone is buying it by cash, makes a difference to an extent but if it’s on loan, hardly a mater of few extra thousand without subsidy.
    What should be more important is increasing the salary of defence personnel, what govt takes up as subsidy, pay it directly as enhanced salary to all personnel, then it’s up to them what they do with it.

  7. Its high time that government stop csd facility. It was instituted primarily to help soldiers serving in remote areas. But like all welfare facility, it surely is bringing bad name to Army. Sadly such is the incompetence at the top army leadership that they instead of doing the correct thing they have always resorted to knee jerk reactions. Iam sure very soon, all of you soon hear stoppage of pension and all crap why NPS is a better deal for Army personnel. Just to share my thought CSD provides most average products. Even the fridges, ACs cannot be purchased without running after the dealers and following tardy documents. I will welcome any move to shut this facility down for officers. Only soldiers should have access to such facility. God bless you.

  8. As an Army officers son , I am ok with CSD subsidy being removed, but then all the free foreign junkets, lunches , free rides dished out to politicians and bureaucrats on tax payers expense should go.

  9. Every developed nation gives its army personnel benefits which include tax rebate on cars, alcohol, housing and loans yet it seems our government just wants to use our defense forces to win elections and then loot them of all their benefits. I don’t belong to the army nor does any of my relatives but I do know that this is the least we can do for our armed forces. People like sneha are the filth of our country who cannot do any good for our country but are always there to crib on social media.

  10. I am a veteran and would like to highlight how stupid & illogical our policymakers are. Even if the Govt wants to curtail so called losses to the exchequer, why put a ceiling of 12L on cost of cars? Instead, they could have capped the maximum GST benefit that can be availed to 1.68L (14% of 12L @ 50% GST benefit). It would give the faujis freedom to buy any make, model or variant, be it a Nano or a BMW. Wouldn’t that also make more sense to boost consumption? Sadly, such rules are only to degrade the status and aspirations of serving & retired officers which will one day have a telling effect on their morale.

  11. There is a retiree brigadier in our society. He purchased RS 18L XUV500 for RS 12L from CSD.
    I’m sure this happens across the military ranks.
    So good move.

    BUT BUT BUT, govt aim isnt to reduce exploitation, but to increase GST revenue. 😂😂😂

  12. Well very, boys the motive is just to curtail the “Extra Cars sold from CSD. like the just something about car sales in in cst is same id the decrease general sales. that mean. its just to curtail that. rest we will be always proud of The Armed Forces.

  13. This is really chindi giri by the government. All talks of this n that for Defence personnels are immediately undermined after elections. Why not similar benefits removed for politicians. They still get 15000 for mobile n telephones bills when there r unlimited calls for 84 daya for just 399.Just because few r corrupt, the whole community is punished. Really sad.

  14. All those commenting on subsidies must endure the troubles of harsh weather inconsistent and frequent postings hampering regular lives of defence personnel and their families. Idea should be to cut corruption which is present in all arms of government. However the few people only worry about the grass which appears to be greener on the other side. Advise them to come join us.

  15. The use of the term ‘Military Personnel’ in this article is grossly inappropriate. It should be ‘Military Officers’ instead. The officers of the defence forces were authorised to purchase cars up to 2500 cc once in every four year. No doubt, it was a clear loot of tax payers money. But few people are aware that civilian class one officers also enjoyed the same facilities from CSD.
    The all time oppressed soldiers were authorised to purchase only two cars through CSD once during service and once after retirement. With a mandatory gap of 10 years in between. The govt should have implemented the same policy for Defence Officers too.
    As per the new policy officers will be able to purchase a new car every 8 years and there is a celing of 12 lakh. Which will again result in shiffoning of govt money. The soldiers are always at the receiving end. As per the new policy they can only purchase car up to 1400 cc with a celing of 5 lakh……So in practical, soldiers cannot buy a car other than Alto, Wagon R , Kwid, swift and Desire etc..that too the base model…Why such discrimination against the soldiers?.If the Govt is serious about saving it’s coffer it should revise the authorisation of officers at par with the soldiers (two cars in life time) without any restriction of engine capacity or price celing.

    The Govt also should revise the authorisation of liquor quota of the officer at par with the soldiers i.e 4 bottles per months……Not only it’s a financial burden for the govt but also It’s not healthy for the Defence officers to consume 12 bottles of liquor every month through CSD.

  16. Were you born stupid Sneha ? Or are you an IAS Termite ? The total subsidy on 6000 Crore @ 14 % GST (ie half of 28% applied to cars) which is the rebate given is RS 840 Cr.
    The Defence Budget for 2018-19 was Rs 97,000/- Crores. Thousands of Crores are wasted by the Indian Ordnance Factory Board, HAL, Mazgon Docks, and DRDO each year on substandard weapons, ammunition and equipment. But neither the MoD Political class or IAS wants to reign it in. That’s because they get a cut from every pin that the Army buys.

    This article is filled with lies. A CSD consumer pays in advance for the Car including the 14% GST. Secondly, no dealer will wait for two years for payment. There is a 14 day wait for the Pay Order including GST waiver and then the vehicle is invoiced by the manufacturer separately so as to account for the GST at the Factory.

    Shame on people like you who will accept corruption, shamelessly pay and receive bribes, but grudge your soldiers some petty perks. No other Army would serve shitbricks like you.

  17. Why people are so jealous about some benefits given to defence personnel. You can also avail them by joining armed forces.

  18. Leeching of tax payers money? Ms sneha do you realize that defence personnel are paid a tax deducted at source salary just in case you are labouring under the illusion that the armed forces are paid tax free salaries? So in the end the defence forces literally pay to safeguard the ungrateful populace of this country. And coming to the so called subsidy that is causing you such pains let me educate you on the fact that the vehicles are not subsidized in any manner. Rather it is the tax on the vehicle that is removed. It works out to be around 600000 to 70000 per vehicle. Any cars which are bought through car are sold without the complimentary officers available for civilians in the form of accessories. So kindly educate yourself before posting such poppycock as such ignorance and puerile opinions are contagious

  19. Disband the armed forces. Let the efficient police force and paramilitary take over. The 2 above comments show that they are mentally deranged. This nation does not deserve the armed forces it has. Period

  20. Govt is hilarious! No 2.5 ltr automobile is available in India for 12 lacs or less. Even 1.8 ltr vehicles cannot be bought for 12 lacs. BTW what about subsidised booze. That too should be limited if not stopped.

  21. About bloody time the leeching of tax payer funds is curtailed. Subsidies are distortions and breed corruption and loss of morality and ethics in many forms. Pay armed personnel more, trim the headcount to a more efficient number, but end these leakages . commercially available prices and terms including taxes should be applicable to ALL. Anything less is a compromise and MUCH more needs to be done to arrest the rot. Liquor subsidies should also be scrapped.

    • Yes, very true…..And people like you should be mandatorily send to siachin glacier to guard the boarder for 2 years and on anti insugency in Kashmir velly for another 2 years after attaining 18 years of age.

    • Sneha, send your children to Armed Forces, if you have any or planning to have !
      That will be the best tribute.
      All this in this article is a nonsense. This Govt. just wants to lower the stature of Armed Forces, the same Armed Forces which help them come to power in recent LS elections.
      All that overshoot of budget and all is a coxk & bull story which has come out of the rotten brain of some bereaucrat.
      It appears as if the Armed Forces personnel are getting all that for free ! Sorry, they pay and pay in much more in advance than the civilians out in the market. The loss is just abiut the GST because the prices are same only GST is waived off. The difference works out to a max of Rs 75000/- per car what I read in one report.
      In any case the Ungrateful nation and even more ungrateful politicians do not pay armed forces so handsomly that all can afgord to buy such high end cars.
      These personnel are overwoeked because they have to work their quota and then take care of the inefficiencies of IAS & IPS lot too ! Remember any disster and any major internal Law and order situation, do you recollect who takes care of such situations ? Do you find any answers by Administration or Police ? Mostly it isArmed Forces. These brave men pou their lives at risk all the time, by virtue of their job as well as for inadequacies of corrupt IAS & IPS lobby !
      In any case this nation is not getting the top class Armed Forces Personnel. There is a woeful shortage of them. In order to attract good talent in these professions by making the careers more lucrative so that the shortfall is taken care of the Govt is lowering their stature and constantly raising the standard of Police. They have no such cap or restriction in CAPF canteens on purchase of any car ! Can you see this double standards ?
      Tell me when will you be comfortable, when an armed forces personnel guards you at the border or if there is a Police posted at the border ?
      Statistically even if 10000 personnel buy these high end cars, the cumulative loss of GST goes to a paltry 75 crores. Is this nation so poor that it can’t even afford 75 crores given to the braves of Armed forces who put their lives at risk to safeguard the nation ?
      If you look at the wealth of IAS IPS IRS guys you will realise how rich these people get leave alone the politicians, where do you think this money cones from. It’s anybody’s guess.
      Please have a clear picture and straight thinking for giving comments on any such issue.

    • Are u out of your mind ?
      The comments given by Sneha and a few others is in poor taste and shows lack of knowledge on the the subject.also a lack of maturity for giving an objective opinion.

      No other forces offer the services that armed forces are in a unique position to provide. In the process of providing these unenviable services,they often lose their life or limb and blood leaving their families, children in distress for life. For whom?

      On top of that the members of armed forces – the combatants join voluntarily …… All this for what?

      All of these to protect our nation and the people in it.This is a selfless service and requires a very high level of motivation to perform effectively and efficiently under risk of live enemy fire which does not make any allowances for human rights.

      I don’t think u had faced any live fire situation….u r just an armchair critic who would type out some junk just for the sake of it. Everybody can express their opinion but not like this …in an irresponsible and callous manner…without utilising the brain.

      In the interest of the nation, a number of their fundamental rights guaranteed to all civilians by the constitution, are suspended ….they cannot strike ,sit on dharna ,take out a procession, criticise anyone,etc.
      They cannot favour a political party also or protest in manners like go slow, gherao,etc.

      You would already know that these jewels decorate the civilians of our country be it in private sector or public …do you want the armed forces members to become civilians ? And behave like them?Unique distinction….the only civilian armed forces in the world .

      Keeping in view such unique services rendered to the nation selflessly and sacrifices made, Govt of every self respecting country provides some incentives as motivation to join armed forces and to keep their morale high at all times in national interest.

      For better knowledge, You can go and visit the CSD services of countries like France, US, Japan,UK, etc. To see what their people offer to their servicemen….and proudly so. It will be a realisation.

      Of course if u want to reduce these facilities or so called privileges which u insensitively call loot, but forget these are for protecting Ur own interests …..u can convert them to civilians …but remember all fundamental rights that civilians enjoy has to be restored back too.

      The cost borne by the taxpayers like us for the benefits is peanuts compared to the massive levels of security we enjoy. Per capita tax would be very less if u compare it to the regular expenses that you incur on spends on monthly entertainment, cigarettes ,liquor ,etc.

      Pls promise that you would put your children in the armed forces …let’s see. You would realise first hand what is policing and what is armed forces

      Salute to the armed forces for their selfless sacrifices and valour.

      Jai Hind!

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