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Showing posts from April 12, 2017

GSTN to Encrypt Tax Data, Add Two Layers of Security

The GST-Network-the entity responsible for the IT backbone for the goods and services tax regime-has assured stakeholders of complete security of their tax data. “Security of your data is of prime importance...We are cognizant of the fact that if your competitor comes to know of it, it will be a big setback for you,“ GSTN CEO Prakash Kumar said on Tuesday at an event by PHDCCI. He said all data will be stored in an encrypted form and only the taxpayer and the assessing officer will have access to the information. Data will be stored with two-layers of security, he added.“... all the information which will come to us, it is always in encrypted mode and the best possible security systems we have provided from the perimeter to inside,“ Kumar said.-Our Bureau


NPA policy: Govt to help banks speed up decisions

Threshold in lenders’ forum likely to be reset

The Narendra Modi government’s new policy to deal with non-performing assets (NPAs) is likely to be centred around consortia of banks.It is planning a framework which will enable a consortium to deal more effectively with NPAs.

For this, the new policy would possibly tweak the current guidelines and reduce the threshold in terms of exposure as well as the number of banks within a joint lending forum (JLF) for taking a decision on NPAs.

According to the current rules, decisions regarding a bad loan or toxic assets are binding on all lenders in a JLF if they are approved by 75 per cent in terms of exposure or 60 per cent in terms of absolute numbers. However, these thresholds are being seen as too high and hence there could be a change in regulations to enable JLFs to decide on NPAs based on a simple majority.

Additionally, to empower bankers in state-owned banks even further, the Centre may finally bring in long-anticipated amendments to the …

New firms get PAN,TAN in a day

The government has started issuing Permanent Account Number (PAN) and Tax Deduction Account Number (TAN) in electronic form to newly incorporated companies within a day, a step towards improving India’s ranking on the ease of doing business rankings.

Until March, 19,704 such companies received PAN in a day.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said it had tied up with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA). Under the arrangement, companies can submit a common application form, SPICe (INC 32),on the latter’s portal. Once the data are sent to the CBDT, PAN and TAN are issued immediately.

In March alone, PAN was allotted to 95.63 per cent of the 10,894 newly floated companies within four hours. Similarly, TAN was allotted to 94.7 per cent of these within four hours and to 99.73 per cent of such companies in a day.

CBDT sources said the lamination of PAN cards would take a few days but ePAN was being sent to applicants within 24 hours.

“An applicant would benefit by having a digitally-si…

FIs told to furnish self-certificates of US account holders by April 30

The income tax department has asked financial institutions (FIs) to ask their non-resident US-based account holders to provide self-certification of their 2014-15 (July-August) accounts by April 30.

If norms under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) are violated, these accounts will be blocked till the self-certification is received.

“The account holders may be informed that, in case self certifications are not provided till April 30, 2017, the accounts will be  blocked, which will mean that the financial institution will prohibit the account holder from effecting any transaction with respect to such accounts,” the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said in a statement.

India had entered into an agreement with the US for implementation of the FATCA with effect from August 31, 2015. FIs had to obtain self-certification from account holders by August 31, 2016, for all individual and entity accounts opened from July 1, 2014, till August 31, 2015.

“Newer accounts already have kn…

New Laws Bring P-Notes Back into Limelight

Amended tax treaties, GAAR have brought Indian laws closer to international norms

Participatory notes are back in favour since amended tax treaties and GAAR (General Anti Avoidance Rules) brought Indian laws closer  to international compliance norms with effect from April 1. P-notes are overseas derivative instruments with Indian stocks as their underlying assets.

The increasing interest in P-notes is also the result of many banks or prime brokers--about 13 of them based in Europe and the US-launching and aggressively marketing several P-note products to attract investors, said bankers, custodians and tax consultants aware of the matter.

Investments in domestic capital markets through P-notes slumped to the lowest in nearly two years to Rs 2.10 lakh crore at the end of June last year after the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) tightened disclosure norms and other rules.

The revival in interest stems from investments through vehicles registered in Mauritius and Singapore comin…

CAG Should Audit GSTN’s Work on Taxes

Leave GSTN’s internal working to its board, audit

Should the Comptroller and Auditor General audit the Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN), which is the nodal body to which indirect tax payments (other than Customs duty) by all producers and suppliers of goods and services will file their tax payments, once GST kicks in, and will reconcile input tax credit claims with tax receipts? The government holds only a minority stake of 49% in GSTN, but the company would process more than half the nation’s tax receipts. GSTN opposes the idea of a CAG audit, but the CAG and some other parts of the government feel otherwise. The solution to this budding controversy is fairly straightforward: GSTN’s own finances should be audited like a private company’s while the CAG must audit the tax collection work.

The whole point of setting up GSTN as a private company was to make it fleet of foot and efficient, with the operational freedom to keep functional an information network to which billions of tax …