Tag Archives: income tax

income tax filing extension

The government has vide its press release dated 5th July, 2021 given extension of time to file forms 15CA & 15CB. 15CA pertains to information to be furnished for payments to non-resident not being a company or to a foreign company. 15CB is a form which is required to be certified by a chartered accountant. The purpose is to track the foreign remittances and CA to ensure that correct tax rates are charged. This form is supposed to be given by the remitter to the authorised dealer who in turn is required to file the same on the income tax portal.

Now apparently there are some glitches in the online system, due to which they have now allowed the manual filing of these forms to be done. That’s quite a shame for India to revert back to the manual system.

Secondly income tax should really look at all these form filing and returns to be filed/ uploaded on the system, whether it is required at all, what purpose does it serve at all. The no. of forms/ returns to be filed by any business in India is humongous and income tax/ GST leads the way in that section.

Thirdly, if at all forms are required for any purpose which the government feels fit, then why restrict the certification part to only CAs. It could be done by any professional CWA or CS, This is not rocket science requiring the expert knowledge of only CAs.

That is my two cents of rant.

https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1732843

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extension in tax compliances

Govt. has announced some extension in tax compliances due to the ongoing covid pandemic and to give relief to the tax payers and assessees. Details are as follows:

In view of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, taxpayers are facing inconvenience in meeting certain tax compliances and also in filing response to various notices. In order to ease compliances to be made by taxpayers during this difficult time, reliefs are being provided through Notifications nos. 74/2021 & 75/2021 dated 25th June, 2021 Circular no. 12/2021 dated 25th June, 2021. These reliefs are:

  1. Objections to Dispute Resolution Panel (DRP) and Assessing Officer under section 144C of the Income-tax Act, 1961 (hereinafter referred to as “the Act”) for which the last date of filing under that section is 1st June, 2021 or thereafter, may be filed within the time provided in that section or by 31st August, 2021, whichever is later.
  2. The Statement of Deduction of Tax for the last quarter of the Financial Year 2020-21, required to be furnished on or before 31st May, 2021 under Rule 31A of the Income-tax Rules,1962 (hereinafter referred to as “the Rules”), as extended to 30th June, 2021 vide Circular No.9 of 2021, may be furnished on or before 15th July, 2021.
  3. The Certificate of Tax Deducted at Source in Form No.16, required to be furnished to the employee by 15th June, 2021 under Rule 31 of the Rules, as extended to 15th July, 2021 vide Circular No.9 of 2021, may be furnished on or before 31st July, 2021.
  4. The Statement of Income paid or credited by an investment fund to its unit holder in Form No. 64D for the Previous Year 2020-21, required to be furnished on or before 15th June, 2021 under Rule 12CB of the Rules, as extended to 30th June, 2021 vide Circular No.9 of 2021, may be furnished on or before 15th July, 2021.
  1. The Statement of Income paid or credited by an investment fund to its unit holder in Form No. 64C for the Previous Year 2020-21, required to be furnished on or before 30th June, 2021 under Rule 12CB of the Rules, as extended to 15th July, 2021 vide Circular No.9 of 2021, may be furnished on or before 31st July, 2021.
  2. The application under Section 10(23C), 12AB, 35(1)(ii)/(iia)/(iii) and 80G of the Act in Form No. 10A/ Form No.10AB, for registration/ provisional registration/ intimation/ approval/ provisional approval of Trusts/ Institutions/ Research Associations etc., required to be made on or before 30th June, 2021, may be made on or before 31st August, 2021.
  3. The compliances to be made by the taxpayers such as investment, deposit, payment, acquisition, purchase, construction or such other action, by whatever name called, for the purpose of claiming any exemption under the provisions contained in Section 54 to 54GB of the Act, for which the last date of such compliance falls between 1st April, 2021 to 29th September, 2021 (both days inclusive), may be completed on or before 30th September, 2021.
  4. The Quarterly Statement in Form No. 15CC to be furnished by authorized dealer in respect of remittances made for the quarter ending on 30th June, 2021, required to be furnished on or before 15th July, 2021 under Rule 37 BB of the Rules, may be furnished on or before 31st July, 2021.
  5. The Equalization Levy Statement in Form No. 1 for the Financial Year 2020-21, which is required to be filed on or before 30th June, 2021, may be furnished on or before 31st July, 2021.
  6. The Annual Statement required to be furnished under sub-section (5) of section 9A of the Act by the eligible investment fund in Form No. 3CEK for the Financial Year 2020-21, which is required to be filed on or before 29th June, 2021, may be furnished on or before 31st July, 2021.
  7. Uploading of the declarations received from recipients in Form No. 15G/15H during the quarter ending 30th June, 2021, which is required to be uploaded on or before 15th July, 2021, may be uploaded by 31st August,2021.
  8. Exercising of option to withdraw pending application (filed before the erstwhile Income Tax Settlement Commission) under sub-section (1) of Section 245M of the Act in Form No. 34BB, which is required to be exercised on or before 27th June, 2021, may be exercised on or before 31st July, 2021.
  9. Last date of linkage of Aadhaar with PAN under section 139AA of the Act, which was earlier extended to 30th June, 2021 is further extended to 30th September, 2021.
  10. Last date of payment of amount under Vivad se Vishwas(without additional amount) which was earlier extended to 30th June, 2021 is further extended to 31st August, 2021.
  11. Last date of payment of amount under Vivad se Vishwas (with additional amount) has been notified as 31st October, 2021.
  12. Time Limit for passing assessment order which was earlier extended to 30th June, 2021 is further extended to 30th September, 2021.
  13. Time Limit for passing penalty order which was earlier extended to 30th June, 2021 is further extended to 30th September, 2021.
  14. Time Limit for processing Equalisation Levy returns which was earlier extended to 30th June, 2021 is further extended to 30th September, 2021.

Frankly, these are way too much compliances to be done by businesses in India. Govt. should seriously look at eliminating some of these forms and returns to be filed under the Income Tax Act.

https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1730355

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income tax relief for housing

https://pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1672636

As part of the AatmaNirbhar Bharat Package 3.0 as announced by Hon’ble Finance Minister on 12th November, 2020, certain income tax relief measures were brought in for real-estate developers and home buyers.

Up to 2018, section 43CA of the Income-tax Act, 1961 (‘the Act’) provided for deeming of the stamp duty value (circle rate) as sale consideration for transfer of real-estate inventory in the case the circle rate exceeded the declared consideration. Consequentially, stamp duty value was deemed as purchase consideration in case of buyer under section 56(2)(x) of the Act. 

In order to provide relief to real estate developers and buyers, the Finance Act, 2018, provided a safe harbour of 5%. Accordingly, these deeming provisions triggered only where the difference between the sale/purchase consideration and the circle rate was more than 5%. In order to provide further relief in this matter, Finance Act, 2020 increased this safe harbour from 5% to 10%. Therefore, currently, the circle rate is deemed to be the sale/purchase consideration for real estate developers and buyers only where the variation between the agreement value and the circle rate is more than 10%.

In order to boost demand in the real-estate sector and to enable the real-estate developers to liquidate their unsold inventory at a rate substantially lower than the circle rate and giving benefit to the home buyers, it has been decided to further increase the safe harbour from 10% to 20% under section 43CA of the Act for the period from 12th November, 2020 to 30th June, 2021 in respect of only primary sale of residential units of value up to Rs. 2 crore. Consequential relief by increasing the safe harbour from 10% to 20% shall also be allowed to buyers of these residential units under section 56(2)(x) of the Act for the said period. Therefore, for these transactions, circle rate shall be deemed as sale/purchase consideration only if the variation between the agreement value and the circle rate is more than 20%.

Legislative amendments in this regard shall be proposed in due course.

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faceless assessment

https://www.pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1658982

The Income Tax Department today launched Faceless Income Tax Appeals. Under Faceless Appeals, all Income Tax appeals will be finalised in a faceless manner under the faceless ecosystem with the exception of appeals relating to serious frauds, major tax evasion, sensitive & search matters, International tax and Black Money Act. Necessary Gazette notification has also been issued today.

It may be noted that Hon’ble PM on 13thAugust, 2020 while launching the Faceless Assessment and Taxpayers’ Charter as part of “Transparent Taxation – Honoring the Honest” platform, had announced launching of Faceless Appeals on 25th September, 2020 on the birth anniversary of Pt. Deen Dayal Upadhayay. Also, in recent years the Income Tax Department has carried out several reforms in Direct Taxes for the simplification of tax processes and for ease of compliance for the taxpayers.

Under the Faceless Appeals, from now on, in income tax appeals, everything from e-allocation of appeal, e-communication of notice/ questionnaire, e-verification/e-enquiry to e-hearing and finally e-communication of the appellate order, the entire process of appeals will be online, dispensing with the need for any physical interface between the appellant and the Department. There will be no physical interface between the taxpayers or their counsel/s and the Income Tax Department. The taxpayers can make submissions from the comfort of their home and save their time and resources.

The Faceless Appeals system will include allocation of cases through Data Analytics and AI under the dynamic jurisdiction with central issuance of notices which would be having Document Identification Number (DIN). As part of dynamic jurisdiction, the draft appellate order will be prepared in one city and will be reviewed in some other city resulting in an objective, fair and just order. The Faceless Appeal will provide not only great convenience to the taxpayers but will also ensure just and fair appeal orders and minimise any further litigation. The new system will also be instrumental in imparting greater efficiency, transparency and accountability in the functioning of the Income Tax Department.

As per data with CBDT, as on date there is a pendency of almost 4.6 lakh appeals at the level of the Commissioner (Appeals) in the Department. Out of this, about 4.05 lakh appeals, i.e., about 88 % of the total appeals will be handled under the Faceless Appeal mechanism and almost 85% of the present strength of Commissioners (Appeals) shall be utilised for disposing off the cases under the Faceless Appeal mechanism.

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ITR filing compliance check

Income tax press release dated 2nd September, 2020

Central Board of Direct Taxes in exercise of powers conferred under section 138(1)(a) of Income Tax Act, 1961, has issued Order inF.No. 225/136/2020/ITA.II dated 31.08.2020, for furnishing information about IT Return Filing Status to Scheduled Commercial Banks, notified vide notification No. 71/2020 dated 31.08.2020 under sub-clause (ii) of clause (a) of sub-section (1) of section 138 of the Act.

The data on cash withdrawal indicated that huge amount of cash is being withdrawn by the persons who have never filed income-tax returns. To ensure filing of return by these persons and to keep track on cash withdrawals by the non-filers, and to curb black money, the Finance Act, 2020 w.e.f. 1st July, 2020 further amended Income-tax Act, 1961 to lower the threshold of cash withdrawal to Rs. 20 lakh for the applicability of TDS for the non-filers and also mandated TDS at the higher rate of 5% on cash withdrawal exceeding Rs. 1 crore by the non-filers.

Income Tax Department has already provided a functionality “Verification of applicability u/s 194N” on http://www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in for Banks and Post offices since 1st July, 2020.  Through this functionality, Bank/Post Office can get the applicable rate of TDS under section 194N of the Income-tax Act, 1961 by entering the PAN of the person who is withdrawing cash.

The Department has now released a new functionality “ITR Filing Compliance Check” which will be available to Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) to check the IT Return filing status of PANs in bulk mode. The Principal Director General of Income-tax (Systems) has notified the procedure and format for providing notified information to the Scheduled Commercial Banks. The salient features of the using functionality are as under:

  1. Accessing “ITR Filing Compliance Check”:The Principal Officer & Designated Director of SCBs, which are registered with the Reporting Portal  of Income-tax Department (https://report.insight.gov.in) shall be able to use the functionality after logging into the Reporting Portal using their credentials. After successfully logging in, link to the functionality “ITR Filing Compliance Check” will appear on the home page of the Reporting Portal.
  2. Preparing request (input) file containing PANs: The CSV Template to enter PAN details can be downloaded by clicking on “Download CSV template” button on the “ITR Filing Compliance Check” page. PANs, for which IT Return filing status is required, are required to be entered in the downloaded CSV template. The current limit of PANs in one file is 10,000.
  3. Uploading the input CSV file: Input CSV file may be uploaded by clicking on Upload CSV button. While uploading, “Reference Financial Year” is required to be selected. Reference Financial Year is the year for which results are required. If selected Reference Financial Year is 2020-21 then results will be available for Assessment years 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20. Uploaded file will start reflecting with Uploaded status.
  4. Downloading the output CSV file: After processing, CSV file containing IT Return Filing Status of the entered PANs will be available for download and “Status” will change to Available.  Output CSV file will have PAN, Name of the PAN holder (masked), IT Return Filing Status for last three Assessment Years. After downloading of the file, the status will change to Downloaded and after 24 hours of availability of the file, download link will expire and status will change to Expired.

Scheduled Commercial Banks can also use API based exchange to automate and integrate the process with the Bank’s core banking solution. Scheduled Commercial Banks are required to document and implement appropriate information security policies and procedures with clearly defined roles and responsibilities to ensure security of information.

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faceless assessment

A National e-Assessment Centre (NeAC) and a network of Regional e-Assessment Centres will be set up to implement the Faceless Assessment Scheme of the Income Tax Department, launched nation-wide by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on 13th August, 2020. The regional assessment network would comprise assessment units, verification units, technical units and review units. The system allows for dynamic jurisdiction, team-based working, and functional specialization and does away with human interface altogether. This was informed by the Principal Chief Commissioner of Income Tax, Mumbai, Shri Patanjali Jha, during a webinar on “Faceless Assessment Scheme and Virtual Court Hearings”, conducted by KPMG India.

Making a comparison between the faceless assessment system and the current system it replaces, the Principal Chief Commissioner explained how the new system is one designed for the 21st century. There is no discretion in selection of assessment cases, while earlier, case selection used to happen manually. In place of single territorial jurisdiction, we now have automated random allocation of cases. While notices used to be issued both manually and on the system, issue of notices will now be done through a central mechanism (by NeAC) in electronic mode. There shall be no physical meetings between taxpayers and officers. Wide discretion and subjective assessment are being replaced by team-based assessment and a system wherein draft order is issued in one city, review is done in another city and finalization is done in yet another city. This thereby leads to an objective, fair and just assessment order, said the Principal Chief Commissioner.

Faceless Assessment Scheme was rolled out in the Income Tax Department as a pilot project in September, 2019. Initially, a limited number of cases were picked up for faceless assessment which was being done at eight centres in the country. 

https://www.pib.gov.in/PressReleasePage.aspx?PRID=1648814

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digital signature conundrum

Today i will talk about the digital signature conundrum in India. We are entering the digital era and everything is online. In order to file any statutory form on a government portal, one needs a digital signature certificate (DSC) . Some sites do not require but their e-governance site is horrible to say the least. Otherwise most of the sites operate on the basis of validation by a DSC of the Director.

Now getting a DSC is the most difficult job in India. One has to fill in a form and submit an application, written in blue ink with the photograph affixed and signature across the photograph. Then the real problem starts. The person has to do a 25 sec video in which he has to hold his income tax permanent account number (PAN) and Aadhar card up for the camera to view it and it should be clearly visible to the camera. Often times, a person has to do the video process at least 3 to 4 times before it gets approved from the system. Apparently the process for obtaining DSC changes frequently, because someone somewhere keeps doing some fraud exploiting some loophole in the system and then they need to revamp the system.

Then comes the issue of registering the DSC on different government portals. A DSC is valid for 2 or 3 years only and one has to renew it every time. And every time it is renewed it is required to be registered on all the government portals where it is going to be used. It has to be registered on Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA), Goods & Service Tax (GST) and income tax portal. The RBI e-governance site does not require DSC registration but i will come to that later. The MSME, Professional Tax, IEC (DGFT) sites do not require DSC registration to my knowledge. I have not tried on any of the provident fund (PF) or employees state insurance corporation (ESIC) sites, so do not know about the requirements there.

I don’t understand why it is required to be registered separately on each government site. Why can’t it be automatically updated on each government portal no sooner it is issued by the authority, which is also a government authority. Something like a Zomato for DSC. It will save a lot of botheration for the stake holders.

Registration of the DSC is another bug bear, because of the software requirements. There is something called the “emsigner” which the users have to download and do some process in order for the DSC to be visible for the purpose of signing the documents. This “emsigner” is the most difficult part, try as much as you can, it does not get loaded for some reasons unknown. It is like the father of your girl friend, whom you are trying to kiss, but he is not allowing to do so, despite repeated attempts.

Once the DSC is registered, then comes the matter of filing the forms and uploading the documents with it. There are multifarious issues here – MCA has got a java problem (you have to download the latest java) and since MCA forms are all on adobe acrobat, you need the correct version of adobe, because of the next problem, which is the file size problem. Now file size of upto 6 mb is allowed to be uploaded, earlier it was only 2.5 mb. Then you need to do some steps to reduce the file size on adobe. Otherwise once client signs with his DSC and then the professional signs with his DSC and then does pre-scrutiny and then saves the form, sometimes the file size goes beyond 6 mb, and then the form will not upload. So one has to keep reducing the sizes of the attachments as well keeping in mind the requirements that the document should be clear and legible to read for the officer sitting in the government office.

GST is as on the date, the smoothest of all government e-governance sites. They do have the DSC registration process which is a pain, but otherwise it is the most user friendly site (caveat : among all government e-governance sites). Recently during covid pandemic, they have allowed to file forms without DSC, via the OTP route, which is good. Recently i filed a form GSTR-1 even with the OTP (i hope it has gone properly, my dashboard says “submitted” though).

I have just filed one form on the income tax portal which is the form 10A for registration under section 12 of the Income Tax Act, 1961 for obtaining registration of charitable institutions/ trust etc for making their tax exempt status, so not an expert to comment on that site. But during filing the form 10A, the system asked for DSC to be registered again, and then it generated something called a signature utility file which was required to be uploaded while submitting the form. Why all government e-governance sites cannot have an uniform standard applicable across the board, i am not able to understand that.

Then we come to RBI e-governance portals, i.e .the Foreign Liabilities & Assets (FLA) return and the Single Master Form (SMF). RBI e-governance sites are unarguably the worst e-gov sites of all. You require three login ids and passwords for their sites, one for FLA return, second for entity master data and third for SMF, whenever you do a foreign exchange transaction i.e. foreign direct investment or transfer etc. FLA requires an OTP every time you login, so this i don’t understand, why you require an OTP when you have to enter the data in the system. Other sites operate on the basis of user id and password, why can’t RBI operate similarly. Secondly the RBI sites are most user unfriendly, too technical to navigate and understand and there is no proper user manual or FAQs for the technical part of the system. Try filing a SMF, then you will come to respect your mother in law better. This is real harassment by the RBI. Every time you submit the SMF, every time they reject the form on one stupid pretext or another and there is no proper guidance. Even after you have filled in the form details correctly and attached all the documents as per their user manual, they will come up with an objection, which is not required in any written manual but based on their whims and fancies. Recently in one SMF, RBI has asked for a copy of the MOA (memorandum of association) of the company. There was never any requirement for attaching the MOA, but i feel that with this form RBI is treating every foreign investor like a criminal – how can they expect more FDI to come in, if they have such an attitude, beats me. What is more criminal is that even if you have submitted the form within the time limit stipulated by them, you get a penalty notice, just because the final submission has been delayed beyond the time limit, due to their whims and fancy requirements. It is ridiculous, to say the least. There should have been videos explaining how to fill in the form especially the FLA return and SMF. They are too complicated to understand.

Government should move into standardise all the e-governance requirements so that it becomes easy to operate for the stakeholders.

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Relief package – covid

Some relief measures announced by Indian Finance Minister today at 2 p.m.

Income Tax
1. Extend last date for income tax returns for (FY 18-19) from 31st March, 2020 to 30th June, 2020.
2. Aadhaar-PAN linking date to be extended from 31st March, 2020 to 30th June, 2020.
3. Vivad se Vishwas scheme – no additional 10% amount, if payment made by June 30, 2020.
4. Due dates for issue of notice, intimation, notification, approval order, sanction order, filing of appeal, furnishing of return, statements, applications, reports, any other documents and time limit for completion of proceedings by the authority and any
compliance by the taxpayer including investment in saving instruments or investments for roll over benefit of capital gains under Income Tax Act, Wealth Tax Act, Prohibition of Benami Property Transaction Act, Black Money Act, STT law, CTT Law, Equalization Levy law, Vivad Se Vishwas law where the time limit is expiring between 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020 shall be extended to 30th June 2020.
5. For delayed payments of advanced tax, self-assessment tax, regular tax, TDS, TCS, equalization levy, STT, CTT made between 20th March 2020 and 30th June 2020, reduced interest rate at 9% instead of 12 %/18 % per annum ( i.e. 0.75% per month instead of
1/1.5 percent per month) will be charged for this period. No late fee/penalty shall be charged for delay relating to this period.
6. Necessary legal circulars and legislative amendments for giving effect to the aforesaid relief shall be issued in due course.
GST/Indirect Tax
1. Last date for filing GSTR-3B in March, April and May 2020 will be extended till the last week of 30th June, 2020 for those having aggregate annual turnover less than Rs. 5 Crore. No interest, late fee, and penalty to be charged.
2. For any delayed payment made between 20th March 2020 and 30th June 2020 reduced rate of interest @9 % per annum ( current interest rate is 18 % per annum) will be charged. No late fee and penalty to be charged, if complied before till 30th June 2020.
3. Date for opting for composition scheme is extended till the last week of June, 2020. Further, the last date for making payments for the quarter ending 31st March, 2020 and filing of return for 2019-20 by the composition dealers will be extended till the last
week of June, 2020.
4. Date for filing GST annual returns of FY 18-19, which is due on 31st March, 2020 is extended till the last week of June 2020.
5. Due date for issue of notice, notification, approval order, sanction order, filing of appeal, furnishing of return, statements, applications, reports, any other documents, time limit for any compliance under the GST laws where the time limit is expiring
between 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020 shall be extended to 30th June 2020.
6. Necessary legal circulars and legislative amendments to give effect to the aforesaid GST relief shall follow with the approval of GST Council.
7. Payment date under Sabka Vishwas Scheme shall be extended to 30th June, 2020. No interest for this period shall be charged if paid by 30th June, 2020.
Customs
8. 24X7 Custom clearance till end of 30th June, 2020
9. Due date for issue of notice, notification, approval order, sanction order, filing of appeal, furnishing applications, reports, any other documents etc., time limit for any compliance under the Customs Act and other allied Laws where the time limit is expiring between 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020 shall be extended to 30th June 2020.

Financial Services
1. Relaxations for 3 months
• Debit cardholders to withdraw cash for free from any other banks’ ATM for 3 months
• Waiver of minimum balance fee
• Reduced bank charges for digital trade transactions for all trade finance consumers

Corporate Affairs
1. No additional fees shall be charged for late filing during a moratorium period from 01st April to 30th September 2020, in respect of any document, return, statement etc., required to be filed in the MCA-21 Registry, irrespective of its due date, which will
not only reduce the compliance burden, including financial burden of companies/ LLPs at large, but also enable long-standing noncompliant companies/ LLPs to make a ‘fresh start’;
2. The mandatory requirement of holding meetings of the Board of the companies within prescribed interval provided in the Companies Act (120 days), 2013, shall be extended by a period of 60 days till next two quarters i.e., till 30th September;
3. Applicability of Companies (Auditor’s Report) Order, 2020 shall be made applicable from the financial year 2020-2021 instead of from 2019-2020 notified earlier. This will significantly ease the burden on companies & their auditors for the year 2019-20.
4. As per Schedule 4 to the Companies Act, 2013, Independent Directors are required to hold at least one meeting without the attendance of Non-independent directors and members of management. For the year 2019-20, if the IDs of a company have not been able to hold even one meeting, the same shall not be viewed as a violation.
5. Requirement to create a Deposit reserve of 20% of deposits maturing during the financial year 2020-21 before 30th April 2020 shall be allowed to be complied with till 30th June 2020.
6. Requirement to invest 15% of debentures maturing during a particular year in specified instruments before 30th April 2020, may be done so before 30th June 2020.
7. Newly incorporated companies are required to file a declaration for Commencement of Business within 6 months of incorporation. An additional time of 6 more months shall be allowed.
8. Non-compliance of minimum residency in India for a period of at least 182 days by at least one director of every company, under Section 149 of the Companies Act, shall not be treated as a violation.
9. Due to the emerging financial distress faced by most companies on account of the large-scale economic distress caused by COVID 19, it has been decided to raise the threshold of default under section 4 of the IBC 2016 to Rs 1 crore (from the existing threshold of Rs 1 lakh). This will by and large prevent triggering of insolvency
proceedings against MSMEs. If the current situation continues beyond 30th of April 2020, we may consider suspending section 7, 9 and 10 of the IBC 2016 for a period of 6 months so as to stop companies at large from being forced into insolvency proceedings in such force majeure causes of default.
10. Detailed notifications/circulars in this regard shall be issued by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs separately.

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new ITR forms

PIB press release dated 9th January, 2020 relaxing some conditions whilst filing the new Income Tax return forms.

In order to ensure that the e-filing utility for filing of return for assessment year (A.Y) 2020-21 is available as on 1st April, 2020, the Income-tax Return (ITR) Forms ITR-1 (Sahaj) and ITR-4 (Sugam) for the A.Y 2020-21 were notified vide notification dated 3rd January, 2020. In the notified returns, the eligibility conditions for filing of ITR-1 & ITR-4 Forms were modified with an intent to keep these forms short and simple with bare minimum number of Schedules. Therefore, a person who owns a property in joint ownership was not made eligible to file the ITR-1 or ITR-4 Forms. For the same reason, a person who is otherwise not required to file return but is required to file return due to fulfilment of one or more conditions in the seventh proviso to section 139(1) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 (the Act), was also not made eligible to file ITR-1 Form.

After the aforesaid notification, concerns have been raised that the changes are likely to cause hardship in the case of individual taxpayers. The taxpayers with jointly owned property have expressed concern that they will now need to file a detailed ITR Form instead of a simple ITR-1 and ITR-4. Similarly, persons who are required to file return as per the seventh proviso to section 139(1) of the Act, and are otherwise eligible to file ITR-1, have also expressed concern that they will not be able to opt for a simpler ITR-1 Form.

The matter has been examined and it has been decided to allow a person, who jointly owns a single house property, to file his/her return of income in ITR-1 or ITR-4 Form, as may be applicable, if he/she meets the other conditions. It has also been decided to allow a person, who is required to file return due to fulfilment of one or more conditions specified in the seventh proviso to section 139(1) of the Act, to file his/her return in ITR-1 Form.

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