In India, advisory equity where an advisor (or mentor) is given shares in lieu of him/her guiding or mentoring the startup attracts GST. But the GST needs to be paid by the advisor and not the startup. If the advisor is an individual, there are certain rules that need to be followed by him to file GST. On the startup side, you need to deduct the TDS though. For example, if shares worth INR 5 lakh is given to an advisor, the startup needs to deposit 10% TDS i.e. INR 50,000 to the IT Department immediately. Mostly this amount of INR 50,000 is then reimbursed by the advisor to the startup so the startup has no net cash outflow.