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Nirmala Sitharaman Highlights: FM extends Income Tax, GST return deadlines; waives off late fee, penalty

FE Online
Nirmala Sitharaman, compliance, statutory measures, covid 19, coronavirus

Nirmala Sitharaman Highlights: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has extended the deadline to file IT returns to 30 June 2020.  She has also reduced interest rate to 9 per cent vs 18 per cent, on delayed deposit of TDS. The deadline to file March, April, and May, has also been extended to June-end. FinMin also announced that the companies with less than Rs 5 Cr turnover, will not have to pay interest, late fee, or penalty, however, for bigger companies, no late fee and penalty will be charged but the interest will be levied at a reduced rate of 9 per cent. The deadline for many Acts and schemes, including Sabka Vishwas Scheme, has also been pushed to 30 June 2020. In another major announcement, the independent directors of companies have received relaxation. Even if they did not hold one meeting last year, the same should not be seen as a violation in FY20.

On the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, the 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 and it has also been announced if the situation doesn’t improve, section 7, 9, and 10 will be lifted for six months to provide cushion to the companies.

Amid coronavirus scare, any debit card can be used to withdraw money from any bank’s ATM, without any extra charge. Maintaining the minimum amount balance is also not mandatory, according to the announcements. In another announcement, the bank charges for digital trade transactions have also been reduced. FM Sitharaman said that the announcements have come from the economic task force, instituted after PM Modi announced it a few days earlier. She also assured of announcing economic packages very soon.

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs had yesterday rolled out a web form that was to ascertain the readiness of the companies towards fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. The government also said that it is a simple web form with minimum fields and can be filed from anywhere, without requiring payment or Digital Signature Certificate (DSC). The compliance is issued for all Indian companies, foreign companies, LLPs, and foreign LLPs and any one of the current Authorized Signatories of the Company or LLP can submit the form online with only OTP verification.