Dear Professional Friends,
COVID Wave 2.0!! In this era of technology, we have seen mobile phones, software, etc upgrade to a newer version. Little did we anticipate this virus will follow the trend. Even before we could assess the extent of the damage caused due to the onslaught of an invisible, unknown and brutal virus, news reports now emerge that we should be gear up for Wave 3.0, 4.0. Helpless health infrastructure had added fuel to fire. Access to extremely basic human needs has become a challenge; no beds, no oxygen, no mobility.
Dear readers, given that Wave 2 is at our doorstep, life has once again forced us to reinvent for those who have not learned from Wave 1. New ways of operation are the new normal. Conventional companies/industries that didn’t prepare for the digital world have collapsed like a deck of cards. A common factor in undertakings that have not only managed to survive, but to flourish during the pandemic, is the fact that they embraced technology, like nobody else. In these tough times, the name of the game is technology.
The second wave of pandemic has unleashed its fury across the country causing unprecedented damage to the health infrastructure and bringing the economic activity to a standstill in states wherein lockdown is imposed. As a response, the immediate need of the hour was for the CBDT to take immediate action to protect the interest of the taxpayers/revenue. An overview of the developments;
- The CBDT vide Notification dated 27 April extended the due dates for passing of assessment order u/s.153 or 153B, orders consequent to DRP directions, notices u/s.148, intimations u/s.168 of Finance Act 2016 and payment of taxes under VsV scheme, from 30 April to 30 June 2021; The SC also extended the period of limitation for filing appeals before courts or tribunals by litigants until further orders.
- Extension of timelines for filing of appeal/ objections before CIT(A)/ DRP, ITR in response to notice under S. 148, filing of belated and revised tax return for AY 2020-21, TDS u/s 194IA, IB and 194M and filing of Form 61 to 31 May 2021;
- Notifying Rule 44DA and Form 34BB for withdrawal applications for pending cases before the Settlement Commission and the format, procedure and guidelines for submission of SFT for depository and mutual fund transactions by Registrar and Share Transfer Agent;
- Relaxation of threshold and filing requirement with respect to Master File and Country by Country Report;
- Constitution of approving panel and secretariat for GAAR references u/s 144BA;
- Clarification by the CBDT to the effect that the faceless appeal scheme shall apply only for the Income Tax Act and not any other laws.
- Notification of threshold under computing Significant Economic Presence.
GST is breaking its own records Month on Month; April recorded the highest ever GST Collections of 1.4 lakh crores. This was possible only because of better compliances and who better to help assessee with this than our own CA Brethren, let us follow the same and ensure that all our clients are tax compliant much before the due dates arrive, ensure their yearly Professional taxes are paid before 30th May, GST Compliance due dates have been extended for the months of March and April but let us ensure that wherever possible the same are completed much before the due dates. It is mandatory to update HSN Summary in the GST Returns from this month onwards, kindly educate the clients for the same. GST Assessments may also commence soon and ensure all your clients are well prepared to handle the notices. Let’s ensure this pandemic does not derail our compliance calendars and appropriate measures for the same are taken.
In view of the difficulties arising due to resurgence of COVID-19 pandemic, The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) vide its circular dated 03rd May 2021 has provided additional time up to 31st July 2021 for Companies/LLPs to file such forms (other than CHG-1, CHG-4 and CHG-9) which were/ would be due for filing from 01st April 2021 to 31st May 2021, without payment of any additional fees.
Further the MCA has also relaxed the requirement of Section 173(1) of the Companies Act, 2013. The requirement of holding Board Meetings of the companies within the interval of 120 days as provided in section 173(1) of the Act shall stand extended by 60 days for first two quarters of the Financial Year 2021-22. Accordingly, the gap between two consecutive meetings of the Board may extend to 180 days during the quarter-April to June 2021 and quarter July to September 2021, instead of 120 days as required in the Companies Act, 2013.
In continuation of MCA circular dated March 23, 2020 wherein it was clarified that spending of CSR funds for COVID-19 is an eligible CSR activity, MCA vide its circulars dated April 22, 2021 and May 05, 2021 further clarified that spending funds for ‘setting up makeshift hospitals and temporary COVID Care facilities’, ‘creating health infrastructure for COVID care’, ‘establishment of medical oxygen generation and storage plants’, ‘manufacturing and supply of Oxygen concentrators, ventilators, cylinders and other medical equipment for countering COVID-19’ or such similar activities are eligible CSR activities.
A Humble Appeal
You all know that we are struggling and sailing through some of the bad times known to human history. With a severe shortage of medical and other items, it has been an agonising experience.
KSCAA and Bangalore branch of SIRC of ICAI has jointly decided to help by donating oxygen concentrators to those in distress.
Together we can make difference – Let’s join hands, by making a generous contribution in fighting this pandemic. To contribute, visit- https://wp.me/pazEKQ-3oM
When the only thing that is constant is change, why hold on a 60-year-old law, a law that is riddled with constant changes and uncertainty, a practice that adds no value to the business community. Lockdown has presented us with one more opportunity to listen carefully, take a pause, think thoroughly, interpret the developments happening around and proceed in the new/right direction. So to conclude, I rest my case on Jimmy Dean’ quote ‘I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.’
I would like to wish you all a Happy lockdown. I know many of you would be shocked, but life is full of challenges and it all depends on how we react. If we can control something, why worry? If we cannot control something, why worry!!!!
Happy introspecting and reading
CA. Kumar S Jigajinni,