Government eases compliance for companies, individuals, no charge for ATM withdrawal

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 24, 2020 Published on March 24, 2020

File photo of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also extended the deadlines for linking PAN with Aadhaar and Vivad se Vishwas tax dispute resolution scheme

In the backdrop of lockdown in most places and with just about seven days remaining for the financial year to close, the government has announced slew of measures to ease compliance and statutory burden for individual as well as corporate. At the same time, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman retreated that an economic package is being worked out and will be announcement soon.

“People should not be worried about compliance…honest tax payers has to be provided mental and physical ease to spend time with family (during the time of lockdown),” Sitharaman said. At the press conference addressed through video conferencing, she spelled out relief measures related with Income Tax, GST, Customs & Central Excise, Corporate Affairs, Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code (IBC) Fisheries, Banking Sector and Commerce.

Asked about delay in announcing comprehensive economic package, she said the government has no intention to delay the package. Parliament session is over, Finance Bill has been passed and government is collating views from various stakeholders. Various sub group such as one comprising of industrialists, other of academicians and one of Parliamentarians are discussing various aspects of economy. All these consultations will help in finalising measures by the COVID-19 Task Force, she said.

On the high volatility in the stock market and rupee breaching 76 for the first time, the Minister said that all the regulators such as RBI and SEBI along with Finance Ministry are monitoring development in the market. “Monitoring is happening thrice a day,” she said. However, when asked about expanding the fiscal or redefining norm for non-performing assets (NPA), she said that any announcement will be made during time to come.

On changes in GST related compliance announced by the FM, MS Mani, Partner with Deloitte India said that the extension of GST return filing timelines together with the deferment of e-invoicing and new returns announced earlier would allow businesses to focus on resumption of business processes once normalcy resumes in future. “The waiver of interest, late fees and penalties for SME’s would enable them to focus on reviving their businesses once things are back to normal, he said.

On measures for direct taxes, Pranav Sayta, National Leader at EY said that the government must be complemented for the swift, comprehensive, clear and decisive manner in which it has proceeded to grant relief as well as extend various compliance timelines in respect of Direct taxes. “This comes as a very welcome measure, to reduce stress and uncertainty, for businesses and taxpayers, already reeling under the severe adverse impact of Covid-19,” he said.

On the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code Chandrajit Banerjee, DG at CII said that sthe announcement has come that the default threshold limit of Rs 1 lakh has been steeply raised to Rs 1 crore. This has come as a major relief to MSMEs. “These measures will greatly help companies where matters are before NCLT,” he said.

Table: Ease of compliance

Relaxed norms

Banking Services:

- No fee on withdrawal by debit card from any bank for 3 months

- No need to maintain minimum balance

- Lower bank charges for digital trade transactions for all trade finance consumers

Corporate Affairs

- Threshold for default under IBC raised to Rs 1 crore from Rs 1 lakh

- No mandatory requirement of holding one board meeting in a gap of 120 days till Sept 30

- Companies (Auditor’s Report) Order, 2020 to be applicable from 2020-21

Foreign Trade

- Extension of timelines for various compliance and procedures

Published on March 24, 2020

A letter from the Editor

Dear Readers,

The coronavirus crisis has changed the world completely in the last few months. All of us have been locked into our homes, economic activity has come to a near standstill. Everyone has been impacted.

Including your favourite business and financial newspaper. Our printing and distribution chains have been severely disrupted across the country, leaving readers without access to newspapers. Newspaper delivery agents have also been unable to service their customers because of multiple restrictions.

In these difficult times, we, at BusinessLine have been working continuously every day so that you are informed about all the developments – whether on the pandemic, on policy responses, or the impact on the world of business and finance. Our team has been working round the clock to keep track of developments so that you – the reader – gets accurate information and actionable insights so that you can protect your jobs, businesses, finances and investments.

We are trying our best to ensure the newspaper reaches your hands every day. We have also ensured that even if your paper is not delivered, you can access BusinessLine in the e-paper format – just as it appears in print. Our website and apps too, are updated every minute, so that you can access the information you want anywhere, anytime.

But all this comes at a heavy cost. As you are aware, the lockdowns have wiped out almost all our entire revenue stream. Sustaining our quality journalism has become extremely challenging. That we have managed so far is thanks to your support. I thank all our subscribers – print and digital – for your support.

I appeal to all or readers to help us navigate these challenging times and help sustain one of the truly independent and credible voices in the world of Indian journalism. Doing so is easy. You can help us enormously simply by subscribing to our digital or e-paper editions. We offer several affordable subscription plans for our website, which includes Portfolio, our investment advisory section that offers rich investment advice from our highly qualified, in-house Research Bureau, the only such team in the Indian newspaper industry.

A little help from you can make a huge difference to the cause of quality journalism!

Support Quality Journalism
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor
You have read 1 out of 3 free articles for this week. For full access, please subscribe and get unlimited access to all sections.