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Electronic Way Bill or E-way bill is a document required to transport goods from one place to another if the goods value exceeds Rs.50,000. It is a document generated from the GST portal before transporting the goods either by road, rail or airways.

The document will contain details of the goods being transported along with the names of the consignor, consignee, transporter etc.

E-way bill can be generated either by the consignor or the consignee and if it is generated by neither of them, then a transporter (even an unregistered transporter) can generate this bill from the GST portal. But for an unregistered transporter to generate the E-way bill, he must first register on the E-way bill portal.

However, the transporter is not responsible to generate an e-way bill in case of transport by railway, by air or by vessel.

Some of the documents which are necessary to generate the E-way bill are-

  • Tax Invoice
  • Delivery Challan
  • Transporter ID
  • Transport document number

Goods transported by Railways:

If the goods are transported by rail, details of the transport document number (RR number) with the date of the document should be provided. The approximate distance covered (in KM) has to be mentioned in the document. Railways issues a receipt called Railways Receipt (RR) as an acknowledgment for the goods to be transported through railways. The transporter can track the status of the transit using the FNR which is the 11 digits printed on top-left of RR.

Generally for the goods to be transported by rail, it has to be moved to the railway station using road transport. For that, an E-way bill would have been already generated and hence only the Part B needs to be updated with RR number for the rail transport. So an E-way bill for railways is complete and can be generated only after obtaining the RR number hence the concerned person/agent/supplier is responsible for getting this information.

For the goods transported through rail, Part B of the E-way bill can be updated either before or after the commencement of movement. But the railways will not deliver the goods unless the e-way bill as required is produced at the time of delivery. Indian Railways has been exempted from generation and carrying of an e-way bill but it is required to carry invoice or delivery challan etc.

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