From extension in filing income tax for FY19 to free debit card withdrawals and no minimum balance, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a slew of measures on Monday following the lockdown due to coronavirus. The FM announced measures for six categories.
The Finance Minister announced that for filing of income tax for the financial year 2018-19, the deadline has been extended from March 31 to June 30. For delayed payments, the interest rate has been reduced
The FM also announced that debit card holders can withdraw cash from any ATM for the next three months at no extra charge. The minimum balance requirement, which was recently done away with for the State Bank of India, has been waived off for everyone.
Bank charges for digital trade transactions for all trade finance consumers will also be reduced, she added.
On delayed deposit of TDS, the FM announced that only reduced interest of 9% will be charged till June 30. The prevailing rate is 18%
The linking of Aadhaar and PAN, whose last date was March 31, has been extended to June 30 as well.
For the government’s Vivad Se Vishwas scheme, an earlier announced charge of 10% after March 31 will not apply till June 30.
The deadline under the Sabka Vishwas scheme, which is a legacy dispute resolution scheme, has also been extended to June 30. During this period, people who pay will not have any interest levied on them if they pay up to June 30.
The FM also announced that customs will operate 24x7 as an essential service till June 30 so exporters do not face any difficulties.
The Finance Minister also announced that a moratorium has been issued for MCA’s 21 registry from April 1 to September 30, and no fees will be levied for late filing. The mandatory requirement to hold board meetings has also been relaxed by 60 days for the next two quarters.
For matters related to GST, the Finance Minister announced the last dates for filing the returns of March, April and May have all been extended to June end, the last of which will be June 30.
For companies which have a turnover of less than Rs 5 crore, the FM announced that they would not be charged interest, penalty or late fee. For companies with a turnover of more than Rs 5 crore, they would only be charged an interest rate of 9%.
The applicability of the report of the company’s auditor, which was to come into force in FY20, has been pushed to FY21.
Furthermore, for companies that have been newly incorporated, the FM announced that while they were earlier given six months to file the declaration of commencement of business, it has now been extended by six months.
Company directors had a minimum residency requirement of 182 days in India. If not complied, it was considered a violation. This will not be treated as a violation under the current circumstances, the FM said.
For matters pertaining to insolvency and bankruptcy code (IBC) Nirmala Sitharaman earlier said the threshold for default was at Rs 1 lakh rupees earlier, which has now been raised to Rs 1 crore. This is to avoid triggering insolvency proceedings of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). They added that they will keep a watch on the situation, and if necessary, Sections 7, 9 and 10 of the IBC, which pertain to the initiation of corporate insolvency resolution, could be suspended for a period of six months so that companies are not forced into insolvency proceedings.