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Eway bills Rules Compliance & its Impact on Transporters & Logistics operator

Updated on:  

08 min read

In this article, we will discuss few Eway bill compliance highlights and also understand how a transporter should deal with practical issues around managing eway bills on case-to-case basis along with the overall impact on transport & logistics operators.

Latest Updates

29th August 2021
From 1st May 2021 to 18th August 2021, the taxpayers will not face blocking of e-way bills for non-filing of GSTR-1 or GSTR-3B (two months or more for monthly filer and one quarter or more for QRMP taxpayers) for March 2021 to May 2021.

4th August 2021
Blocking of e-way bills due to non-filing of GSTR-3B resumes from 15th August 2021.

1st June 2021
1. The e-way bill portal, in its release notes, has clarified that a suspended GSTIN cannot generate an e-way bill. However, a suspended GSTIN as a recipient or as a transporter can get a generated e-way bill.
2. the mode of transport ‘Ship’ has now been updated to ‘Ship/Road cum Ship’ so that the user can enter a vehicle number where goods are initially moved by road and a bill of lading number and date for movement by ship. This will help in availing the ODC benefits for movement using ships and facilitate the updating of vehicle details as and when moved on road.

18th May 2021
The CBIC in Notification 15/2021-Central Tax has notified that the blocking of GSTINs for e-Way Bill generation is now considered only for the defaulting supplier’s GSTIN and not for the defaulting recipient or the transporter’s GSTIN.

17th March 2021
1. The e-way bills portal has released an update stating that e-way bills cannot be generated with only SAC codes (99) for services. There should be a minimum of one HSN code belonging to goods mentioned mandatorily.
2. Vehicle type ODC is provisioned for transport mode ‘Ship’.
3. Transporters are provided with a report of e-way bills based on the assigned date.

22nd December 2020
1. The CBIC increased the distance per day in case of goods transported through vehicles, other than the over-dimensional cargo, for determining the validity, as follows:
(a) It is one day – For a distance of up to 200 km as against earlier 100 km
(b) An additional day is taken- For every additional 200 km or part thereof, as against previously notified additional 100 km or part thereof
2. Regarding blocking of the e-way bill where a taxpayer fails to file GSTR-3B, the provision has been amended to replace two or more months with two or more tax periods. The same has been changed to include the quarterly return filers.

16th November 2020
1. According to Rule 138E (a) and (b) of the CGST Rules, 2017, the e-way bill generation facility of a taxpayer will be restricted, if the taxpayer fails to file their Form GSTR-3B returns or statement in Form GST CMP-08, for tax periods of two or more.
2. On 1st December 2020, the system will check the status of returns filed in Form GSTR-3B or the statements filed in Form GST CMP-08, for the class of taxpayers to whom it applies, and restrict the generation of e-way bill in case of:
(a) Non-filing of two or more returns in Form GSTR-3B for the months up to October 2020; and
(b) Non-filing of two or more statements in Form GST CMP-08 for the quarters up to July to September 2020
3. From 1st December 2020 onwards, blocking of e-way bill generation facilities would be made applicable to all taxpayers, irrespective of their Aggregate Annual Turnover (AATO), according to the terms of Rule 138E (a) and (b) of the CGST Rules, 2017.
4. The blocking will take place periodically from 1st December 2020 onwards.
5. To continue generating e-way bill on the e-way bill portal, taxpayers are advised to file their pending GSTR-3B returns/GST CMP-08 statements immediately.

Transporter’s business in the earlier regime 

In Karnataka, under the concept of e-Delivery Note, the law mandated every dealer to inform the department about a goods movement transaction (bulk) prior to the commencement of the goods movement, as against the old practice of dealers moving the goods first and then informing the department later, on a periodic basis. Since printouts were, difficult to obtain by some dealers, the e-Delivery Note process was reformed to e-SUGAM. So, the onus of Waybills was upon the dealers and not the transporters.

Brief about E-Sugam Karnataka

Under e-SUGAM, the system on receipt of transaction details of goods being transported of a value exceeding Rs 25,000 from the dealer, validates and generates a unique number as an acknowledgment, called the E-SUGAM number. This number and the E-sugam form then becomes the passport for the transport vehicle at the check-post. Similarly, each state had its own format of declaration forms, permits, and waybills.

Compliance Requirements for E way bills involving transporters

  • An E way bill is a unique bill/document which is electronically generated for specific consignment/movement of goods(either inter-state or intra-state) of value more than Rs.50,000. EWB has to be generated by the seller/consignor. Where the seller does not generate, the transporter may do so after the authorization by the seller.
  • The person in charge of a conveyance shall carry the tax invoice or bill of supply or delivery challan, bill of entry as the case may be; and a copy of the e-way bill or the e-way bill number generated from the common portal.
  • Once E-way bill is generated, it cannot be edited for any mistake. However, it can be canceled within 24 hours of generation.
  • While generating e-way bill the registered person has a provision to enter the transporter id in the transportation details section (Part B). On entering 15 digits transporter id provided by the transporter, the e-way bill will be assigned to that transporter for updating the vehicle details. Subsequently, the transporter can reassign another transporter by using the option ‘Update EWB Transporter’ after which the registered person who initially generated the EWB loses power to change the Transporter.
  • E- Way Bill may be updated with vehicle number any number of times before expiry of validity
  • The latest vehicle number should be available on e-way bill and should match with the vehicle carrying it in case checked by the dept.  
  • It often happens that goods are transported with intermediary stops in between before reaching their destination.  Additionally, goods are also transported through several modes of transport such as air, rail, road etc. In both cases, the transporter needs to update the vehicle number of new vehicle and/or mode of transport in Part B of Form GST EWB 01. Also, the e-way bill in physical form is needed for delivery of goods.
  • If multiple invoices are issued by the supplier for movement of goods of more than one invoice of same consignor and consignee, multiple EWBs have to be generated. For each invoice separate EWB has to be generated, irrespective of same or different consignors or consignees are involved.
  • Multiple invoices cannot be clubbed to generate one EWB. However, after generating all these EWBs, one Consolidated EWB can be prepared for transportation purpose to reduce paperwork, if they are transported in one vehicle.
  • The validity period of the EWB is calculated based on the ‘approx. distance’ entered while generating the EWB and the Type of conveyance. For example if approx. distance is 525KMs then validity period is 6 days.

Refer below table for a quick guide to determine validity –

Type of conveyanceDistanceValidity of EWB
Other than Over dimensional cargoLess Than 100 Kms1 Day
For every additional 100 Kms or part thereofAdditional 1 Day
For Over dimensional cargoLess Than 20 Kms1 Day
For every additional 20 Kms or part thereofAdditional 1 Day

11. Where the goods are transported for a distance of less than fifty kilometers within the State from the place of business of consignor to the place of the transporter for further transportation, then the vehicle number is not mandatory. Similarly when the movement of goods from the place of business of transporter to the place of business of consignee is less than 50 KM within the State then vehicles details is not mandatory.

12. As per provision 138(7), E Way bill needs to be generated when there is a movement of goods in a vehicle/ conveyance of value more than Rs. 50,000( either each Invoice or in the aggregate of all Invoices in a vehicle/ Conveyance). However as per latest update as on 23rd March 2018, until a date is notified, a transporter need not generate an e way bill where the consignment individually is less than or equal to 50000 but in the aggregate exceeds 50000.

13. Empty carriers or vehicles do not require E way bills as there is no movement of goods and no value is associated. Also, it is not necessary to generate E way bills when empty cargo containers are being transported. One of the key achievements of the e-way bill will surely be the effective dissolution of state borders. The amount of time wasted at state borders to validate documents with regards to inter-state movements of goods was a hindrance to any business which dared to spread its wings, beyond its home state.

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