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Showing posts from May 4, 2017

Widen the tax net to include agriculture

The NIPFP report has noted that the availability of a large stream of exempted income is a major reason for tax evasion. The report has made a few major recommendations to increase the reach of the taxman to include agriculture — a sector that has by and large remained out of bounds for the taxing authorities at the Centre and in states.

The report has thus suggested that the government should examine whether the definition of agricultural income can be amended to restrict the exemption to basic agricultural operation and processes. In other words, activities where there is a significant amount of value addition after the produce is brought out from the soil can be excluded from the ambit of agricultural income.

Agriculture in India cannot be taxed by the Centre and it is only states that can consider levying income tax on farming. However, no state has ever considered taxing the farm sector's income in view of the adverse political fallout of such a move. But the NIPFP report has …

Modi trains guns on benami properties

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked the revenue department to scale up e-assessment facilities to cover 25 cities, take corrupt officers to task and promote a regime friendly to taxpayers.He also asked the department to train guns on benami properties and focus on broadening the tax net.

At a one and a half hour review meeting on Tuesday attended by Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia and the Central Board of Direct Taxes Chairman Sushil Chandra, the PM is learnt to have demurred some what at the tax collections.

“He said the tax collections could have been higher as fall-out of demonetisation but was glad with the department´s efforts,” said an official.Income tax returns grew 21.7 per cent in 2016-17, whereas gross collections grew 16 per cent -the highest in five years.Advance tax grew 15 per cent in 201617 versus 7.5 per cent in the previous financial year.

Self-assessment tax, which can be declared for the previous two years (2014-15 and 2015-16), saw a growth of 24 per cent versus …

Andhra may opt for new fiscal year

Most states await directions from the central government

Madhya Pradesh may have taken one jump ahead of the other states in switching over to the January December fiscal year, but Andhra Pradesh too is preparing to follow in its footsteps next year.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, whose Telugu Desam Party (TDP) is part of the BJPled National Democratic Alliance (NDA), has been at the forefront of supporting the Centre´s initiatives on many fronts, including the recent demonetisation drive.

“The financial year has to be uniform in the country because the states will receive central grants as well as their shares in central taxes, which are calculated and released in specific financial years.Therefore, states will have to align their fiscal years to that of the Centre.Andhra Pradesh is ready to make January-December its fiscal year whenever the government of India wants to make the switchover,”a finance ministry official said.

The April-March financial year is a remnant…

Madhya Pradesh Assembly passes GST Bill-2017

The Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly on Wednesday unanimously passed the Madhya Pradesh Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill-2017.Both Treasury and Opposition benches tried to grab credit for this new tax regime.The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and Opposition Congress adopted the Bill in the House, paving the way for the rollout of GST. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan was present in the House when Finance Minister Jayant Malaiya moved the MP Goods and Services Bill, 2017, at the daylong special session.Earlier, both BJP and Congress tried to position GST as their own victory."The present version of GST Bill is a translation of the Bill proposed by the UPA government.It was Manmohan Singh who opened up the Indian economy that led to economic reforms in the country," senior Congress MLA Mukesh Nayak said.

Business Standard New Delhi, 04th May 2017

Ordinance to tackle bad loans cleared

Cabinet nod for amendments to banking Act to give more teeth to RBI

The Union Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Wednesday approvedanew framework for dealing with Rs 6 lakh crore worth of non performing assets (NPAs)  in the banking system.

The framework includes the promulgation of an Ordinance to amend the Banking Regulation Act to give more teeth to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and its oversight committees to act on behalf of banks while deciding on NPAs.The proposals are now awaiting the President´s assent.

“We have taken some decisions regarding the banking sector.There are some modifications for which the President´s assent is required,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said at a post cabinet press briefing.“There is a convention that when some proposal is referred to the President, then details of it cannot be disclosed till it is approved.As soon as approval comes, details will be shared,” he added.

The Cabinet also approved a National Steel Policy that aims to give…