A. LABOUR & EMPLOYMENT BENEFITS TO CONSTRUCTION AND DAILY WAGE WORKERS
The Government has announced relief for Daily wage workers and construction workers for an amount of Rs.1000 per person for all States and Union Territories. Such amounts shall be made via Direct Benefit Transfer from the BOCW Cess Pool under the Building and Other Construction of Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1996.
B. KEY HIGHLIGHTS OF FINANCE MINISTER'S ANNOUNCEMENTS
I. Income Tax Act, 1961
1. Financial year 2018-2019 - last date for filing Income tax return has now been extended from 31st March, 2020 to 30th June, 2020.
2. Upon delayed filing, the Interest rate has been reduced from 12% to 9% for the Financial Year 2018-2019.
3. TDS - no extension but on delayed deposit of TDS till 30th June,2020 the interest chargeable has been reduced from 18% to 9% - till 30th June,2020.
4. Adhar pan linking - date extended from 31st March,2020 to 30th June,2020.
5. Vivad se Vishwas - extended till 30th June,2020 (No 10% additional charge shall be applicable).
6. Due date for issue of notice intimation, notification, approval order, sanction order, filing of appeal, furnish return, return statement, application, reports any other documents and compliances by tax payer including investment on saving instrument or investment for roll over benefit of capital gain, under various acts, time limit extended till 30th June 2020.
II. Goods And Service Tax ("GST")
1. For the month of March, April and May, 2020 returns 3B, GSRT 1 and Composition return - Due date shall be 30th June,2020.
2. Companies less than 5crore turnover - No interest, penalty, late fees shall be charged.
3. Companies having turnover more than 5 crore- No late fee however interest chargeable shall be 9%.
4. Date for opting Composition scheme shall be 30th June,2020 however staggering dates shall be provided in due course.
III. Customs Act,1962 and Central Excise Act,1944
1. Sab Ka Vishwaas Scheme extended till 30th June 2020, indirect tax regime settling dispute scheme (No interest levied).
2. Customs clearance will be working 24x7 till 30th June,2020 inspite of lockdown as it is an essential service.
IV. Ministry of Corporate Affairs ("MCA") Compliances
1. With respect to MCA 21 registry there is a moratorium issued from 1st April,2020 till 30 September 2020. There shall be no additional fees applicable.
2. Period of holding a board meeting as required under Companies Act, 2013 ('Companies Act') has been relaxed by a period of 60 days for next two quarters.
3. Applicability of CARO 2019 shall be applicable from 2020-2021 instead of 2019-2020.
4. If an Independent Director of a Company has not attended even one meeting it shall not be considered as violation under Schedule VI of the Companies Act.
5. For newly incorporated companies, declaration of commencement of business can be filled upto 1 year which was earlier 6 months from the date of incorporation of such company.
6. Residency clause relaxed if a director of a Company doesn't reside in India for more than 182 days, it shall not be considered as violation of Section 149 of Companies Act.
7. 20% Deposit Reserve Date extended to 30 June, 2020 which was earlier 30th April, 2020.
8. 15% Debentures maturing in a particular year investment in specified instruments before 30th April 2020, extended till 30th June 2020.
V. Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 ("IBC")
The existing threshold of Rs.1,00,000 (Rupees One Lakh) for triggering insolvency is raised to Rs. 1 crore so as to prevent triggering insolvency proceedings against MSME. In the event the lockdown continues beyond 30th April,2020, the Ministry shall consider suspending Section 7, 9 and 10 of IBC.
1. Compliance related to import permits, SIP, brood stock and other aquaculture inputs which were to expire by 1st April 2020 - 15th April 2020, now extended for 3 months. Till 15th April 2020
2. Delay up to 1 month in arrival of consignments, to be condoned
3. Rebooking of quarantine cubicles for cancelled consignments, which is in Chennai, no additional booking charges
4. Verifications of documents and grant of NOC to be relaxed to 3 days instead of 7 days.
VII. Banking/ Department of Financial Services
1. Debit Card holders withdrawing cash from any ATM, no charges for 3 months shall be applicable.
2. No minimum balance requirement for Savings Bank Account.
3. Bank Charges reduced for digital trade transactions for all trade finance consumers.
For all practical purposes, extension of time for procedural and eligibility point of view, no extension or modification of scheme guidelines shall apply.
C. INSURANCE REGULATORY AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHOPRITY OF INDIA (IRDAI) RELIEF MEASURES
1. In case of life insurance policies, there is a grace period for payment of renewal premiums. Insurers have been asked to enhance the grace period by additional 30 days if desired by the policyholders.
2. In case of health insurance policies, the insurers may condone delay in renewal up to 30 days without deeming such condonation as a break policy. However, insurers are requested to contact the policyholders well in advance so as not to have discontinuance in coverage.
3. In case of Board Meetings of insurers, the meetings due till 30th June 2020 may be held through video- conferencing or other audio-visual means in accordance with Rule 3 of the Companies (Meetings of Boards and its Powers) Rules 2014 as amended on 19th March 2020.
4. In case of submission of monthly returns for the month of March 2020 by insurers and insurance intermediaries, additional time of 15 days will be allowed. Similarly, in case of quarterly returns, an additional period up to one month will be permitted.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.