31 July 2012

ITR Return Date Extended

Vide Notification issued u/s 139(1), the CBDT has extended the 'due date' for filing of returns of income for the Assessment Year 2012-13 to August 31, 2012 in respect of assessees who are liable to file such returns by July 31, 2012.

--
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28 July 2012

Taxpayer Friendly Initiatives


Finance Ministry's Press Release Reg "Taxpayer Friendly Initiatives"

Press Release dated 23.0.2012 issued by the Ministry of Finance
Income Tax Department Starts Two More Taxpayer Friendly Initiatives : 'Register for Home Visit' and 'Online Tax Help'
 In order to make the Income Tax Return filing experience even more convenient, the Income Tax Department has started two more taxpayer friendly initiatives 'Register for Home Visit' and 'Online Tax Help'. To avail these facilities, a taxpayer must visit the website www.trpscheme.com and take help of trained professionals either online or at their homes. The taxpayer can choose between 'online help' or 'home visit'.

On choosing the option of online tax help, the taxpayer can fill in his tax related query along with his contact details. The online query will be resolved by tax experts through Email or Phone within 24 hours.

The taxpayers who choose to register for home visit, will be asked to indicate in short the help required by them and a convenient date and time when the Tax Return Preparer (TRP) can visit them for assistance. The help desk will forward the query of the taxpayer to the nearest available TRP and fix the appointment telephonically. The TRP will then visit the taxpayer and render assistance. The facility is aimed to facilitate taxpayers in filing their return and thereby reducing their cost of compliance. The TRPs are allowed to collect fee from the taxpayers as per the TRP notification subject to a maximum of Rs. 250 per return preparation. The facility for home visit by TRPs has been presently made available in few cities such as Bangalore, Chennai, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, New Delhi, and Patna. The facility would be extended to more cities during the next phase.

The TRP scheme call center 1800-10-23738 may be called for further information regarding these initiatives.

The Tax Return Preparer Scheme is an initiative of the Income Tax Department to help small and marginal tax payers in filing of their Income Tax Returns. This Scheme is applicable to individual and HUF tax payers who can take assistance of TRPs in preparation and filing of their Income Tax Returns. The TRPs are self employed graduates who are trained by the Income Tax Department for filing of Income Tax Returns as well as quarterly TDS statements. The TRPs are authorized to collect nominal charges of Rs. 250 or less from the tax payers for preparing their Income Tax Returns. The Department also pays incentive to the TRPs for preparing of returns of tax payers which is a percentage of the total tax paid as per the returns prepared by the TRP subject to a maximum of Rs. 1000/-.

24 July 2012

PIB on TDS Returns

Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
10-July-2012 16:05 IST
Deductors Must Comply with their Obligations to Ensure Correct Credit to Persons from Whose Income Tax is Deducted at Source
All deductors other than Government deductors must file their quarterly TDS statement for the quarter ending 30th June 2012, on or before 15th July 2012 and Government deductors must file their statement on or before 30th July 2012. While submitting their statements, the deductors have to choose correct and relevant form, quote correct PAN against all entries and ensure that correct CIN/BIN is quoted in the TDS statement. Non-quoting of PAN or TAN in TDS statements or delay in filing of TDS statements may lead to levy of penalty.

Filing of TDS statement with correct PAN and CIN/BIN is important because under Rule 37BA of Income Tax Rules, 1962 credit for tax deducted at source is given to the deductees on the basis of TDS statement furnished to the Income-tax Department by the deductor. Filing of TDS statements with incorrect PAN or other details of the deductee would, therefore, cause inconvenience to the deductees (taxpayer).

In case the income on which tax has been deducted at source is assessable in the hands of a person other than the deductee, the deductee must file a declaration with the deductor that credit for the TDS shall be given to the other person and not to the deductee. The declaration filed by the deductee must contain the name, address, Permanent Account Number of the person to whom credit is to be given and reasons for giving credit to such person. The deductor must, in the TDS statement, report the tax deduction in the name of such other person and also issue the TDS certificate in the name of the person in whose name credit is shown in the TDS statement.

TDS certificates for deductions on income other than salary income (Form 16A) for the quarter ending 30th June 2012 should be issued on or before 30th July 2012.



Companies (Second Amendment) Act,2002

MCA Updates
Enforcement of certain provisions of Companies (Second Amendment) Act, 2002
Companies (Second Amendment) Act, 2002, which proposes to bring about several regulatory and procedural changes in Companies Act, 1956 through insertion of provisions in the Act and amendment in various sections of Companies Act, 1956, is not effective till date.
Section 2 of the Amendment Act states that Central Government may appoint a date, by notification in the Official Gazette to bring into force the amendment Act, provided that different dates may be appointed to give into effect different sections of the amendment Act. Drawing its authority from this section, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, vide Notification S.O. (E) dated July 10, 2012 has notified August 12, 2012 as the effective date of Companies (Second Amendment) Act, 2002, w.r.t. certain sections of Companies Act, 1956. This is for the first time that a date has been notified for any of the sections of the amendment Act, as none of its sections has taken effect till date.
Sections of Companies Act, 1956 which fall under the purview of the Notification and in respect to which the date has been notified are detailed as follows:

Section 17, Section 18 and Section 19 of Companies Act, 1956
Section 17 provides for alteration in Objects Clause of Memorandum of Association and change in Registered Office of companies from one State to another and matters related thereto. The effective amendment calls for the substitution of the text of section with the amended text as provided in Section 7 of the Amendment Act, whereby the authority governing the change in Registered Office from one State to another will be shifted from Company Law Board to Central Government.
Sections 18 prescribes for registration of the Order passed under section 17 and Section 19 specifies the effect of failure to register the same. and in this context the amendment, substitutes the word "Company Law Board" has been substituted with the word "Central Government" in both these sections, as provided in Section 8 of the Amendment Act.
However, it is to be further noted that the Ministry through another Notification S.O.(E) dated July 10, 2012, has further delegated powers of Central Government under the aforementioned sections to the concerned Regional Directors.

Highlights of Expert Group Report on Societies Registration Act 1860

Highlights of Expert Group Report on Societies Registration Act 1860
Introduction: 
An Expert Group was constituted by Ministry of Corporate Affairs to study the legislative and regulatory architecture of the Societies Registration Act, 1860 and to understand and gauge the ground level situation of societies operating in India at present.
The Group realized that that there are two different types of societies pertaining in India, one whose functions are restricted to only one state only and others, whose activities are spread in more than one state and it has drafted a Bill in respect of societies having multi- state operations which is called a Multi-State Societies Registration Bill, 2012 (MSSRB, 2011). . A model law governing the registration of societies having operation limited to one state will also be prescribed soon but the said law will have to adopted and enacted by each State separately.
It is to be further noted that at present there is no exclusive law governing the functioning of multi-state based societies. The Expert Group has drafted the bill governing the functioning of Multi-State Societies. The Bill seeks to regulate the working of Mulit State Societies by providing disclsore & reporting requirements and more powers to Central Government.
Moreover the current Societies Registration Act is very weak and doesn't provides for effective regulation of working of the Societies. Though the Societies are required to submit document to Registrar of Firm from time to time but Societies hardly do the same. Moreover since Societies are not required to disclose their accounts therefore they are not subject to public scrutiny and lack transparency. 
As per the expert committee report there are more than 30 Lakh societies that are registered in India, assuming the numbers, the new law will create a drastic impact on the working of all these.
Highlights of the Bill are as follows:
·  The Bill contains 63 clause , 8 chapters and 2 Schedules.
·  The Bill proposes to provide an enabling framework for the registration and functioning of the multi-state societies. The definition of what constitutes a 'multi-state society' would be determined by the objective and nature of their activities as per the provision of the Proposed Bill
·  One of the important definition, on the sidelines of which the Bill has been drafted is "Inter-State Activity". Since this Bill has been specially drafted for the Multi-state operations based societies, this definition assumes more importance. It means any activity carried out by a society directly or indirectly for cash, or for deferred payment or for commission, remuneration or other valuable consideration from the place other than place of origin, including overseas transaction and also includes certain other transactions also. More importantly societies who receive foreign contribution or donation/grants /funds from NRI in excess of amount prescribed will also be treated as Inter State Activity
·  "Multi-State Society" means any multi-state society registered under this Act or any society carrying on inter-state activity
·  After the enactment of this Act and no matter what is contained in any other Act, no Multi-State Society can carry any inter-state activity without being registered under this Act. Existing multi state societies registered under the Societies Registration Act should, either register under this Act or stop carrying such activities within the prescribed time. Failure to obtain registration is an offence punishable under the proposed Bill.
·  A multi-state society registered under this Act shall be deemed to be body corporate as on date Societies are not treated as Body Corporate
·  Under the existing Act, the application for registration has to be made before Registrar of Joint-stock Companies, whereas the Bill requires the application to be made before Registrar of Multi-State Societies, as notified by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA). Detailed application will have to submitted for registration of Societies on an electronic platform.
·  Compliances have been increased, intimation is required to be given to Registrar is case of certain events and an annual report of its inter-state activities is also required to be submitted with it.
·  Every such society will now have to maintain books of accounts, on all receipts and expenditure, sales and purchases of goods and assets and liabilities of the society.
·  Power have been given to Central Government to cancel the registration of Societies under certain circumstance , this was not there earlier.
·  Mode of dissolution of Multi-State Societies has been prescribed in detail. It provides for two modes of dissolution for a multi-state society viz, a) voluntary; and b) compulsory.Voluntary dissolution may be ordered, if, a registered multi-state society makes an application to Central Government., signed by not less than three-fifths of the members of that multi-state society. 
Compulsory dissolution may occur if the Central Government. has reason to believe that the society is being used for unlawful purposes or for purposes prejudicial to national security, peace, welfare or public order, or if the registration of any multi-state society has been procured by fraud or misrepresentation, or if the society is being used for the purposes incompatible with its objects or if the society becomes dormant.
·  Central Government has the power to order mandatory winding of the society under certain circumstances.
·  Majority of the officers and members of the Board of every multi-state society shall be citizens of India, which is a new requirement.
·  Now members of the society can inspect its books and accounts, which was not allowed earlier.
·  The bill provides elaborate provisions for Inspection, Inquiry and Investigation into the affairs of the society by the Central Government, which were not there earlier.
·  Now Central Government may also require the society to furnish such information or documents, as it considers necessary, on scrutiny of any document filed by such society or any information received by the Government or in public interest. It will be the duty of the society and of its officers to coordinate in this respect. It may even authorize an inspector to make an inspection. , currently there is no such provision.
·  Power has also been given to Central Government to order search and seizure of records and information of any society , which was not earlier.
·  Penalties have been provided in case of furnishing false information, statement or destruction of records
·  Central Government has also given the power to takeover the affairs of Society under prescribed conditions.
·  Members of Governing body of Society has to obtain a Governing Body Identification Number on the line of Director Identification Number for Directors in case of Companies.
·  The Bill also provides elaborate provisions for registration of foreign societies having place of business in India, which is not allowed currently. A foreign society is defined as a society or other association of individuals incorporated outside India within the meaning of Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999.
·  A new concept of Improvement Notice has been introduced. It provides that if a society has furnished false or misleading documents for obtaining registration or has failed to comply with the provisions of this act, in that case an 'Improvement Notice' will be served on it. Failure to comply with such notice will result in suspension of registration. Finally if a multi-state society fails to comply with the notice even during the period of suspension, then its registration will be cancelled.
·  Similar to Companies & LLP, public can also inspect the records of the Multi State Societies maintained with the Registrar.
·  Provision has been made to regulate the interest of the members in the contracts executed or entered into by the Societies.
·  The Bill will also provide the formats in which the Financial Statement of the Society have to be prepared.
 
Note:

MCA has invited public comments on Multi-State Societies Registration Bill, 2012 . All those desirous of submitting views/suggestions may send their written views and suggestions on the Bill to Ministry of Corporate Affairs on e-mail at
 renuka.kumar@mca.gov.in and aloksamantarai@mca.gov.in. The person/interested party may also sent their comments/suggestions by post addressed to Smt. Renuka Kumar, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Room No. 504, 5th Floor, 'A'Wing, shastri Bhawan, New Delhi or Shri Alok Samantarai, Joint Director, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Room No. 527, 5th Floor, 'A' Wing, shastri Bhawan, New Delhi by 15th of September, 2012.
 

Form 23 B Filing date extended


Ministry vide circular number 14/2012 dated 21.06.2012 had imposed fees on Form 23B (Information by auditor to Registrar) w.e.f. 22/07/2012. Kindly note that the last date for filing the Form 23B without fee has been extended for two weeks. Fee shall be charged on any eForm 23B filed on or after 5th August, 2012. You are therefore advised to file the pending eForms within the time limit to avoid any last minute rush.

Form 5INV

Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Corporate Affairs
20-July-2012 15:58 IST
MCA Notification on Investor Education and Protection Fund (Uploading of
Information Regarding unpaid and Unclaimed Amounts Lying with Companies) Rules,
2012
The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has notified that Investor Education and Protection Fund
(Uploading of information regarding unpaid and unclaimed amounts lying with companies)
Rules, 2012, has mandated every company to file eForm 5INV containing the information of
unclaimed and unpaid amounts as referred to in subsection (2) of section 205C of the
Companies Act, 1956.
As per the notification this information is required to be filed every year within a period of
90 days after the holding of Annual General Meeting or the date on which it should have
been held as per the provisions of section 166 of the Act, and every year thereafter till
completion of the seven years' period. The information is to be filed in Form 5- INV as per
the above mentioned rules; and thereafter an excel sheet containing detailed investor wise
details is to be filed separately. The e Form, the excel template and detailed steps are
provided in the IEPF application link on the portal www.iepf.gov.in.For financial year ended
on 31st March 2011, the eForm should be filed latest by 31st July 2012.
For more details the investors have been advised to visit the website www.iepf.gov.in and
the Investor Education and Protection Fund (Uploading of information regarding unpaid and
unclaimed amounts lying with companies) Rules, 2012.
*****
ST/-

e-PF Passbook

Dear Members,
Employees' Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) had recently started the Electronic Challan cum Return facility for employers for promoting a prompt and transparent service.
Now, EPFO has issued a circular on introducing a facility of E-Passbook to Provident Fund Members through Member Portal on EPFO website.

10 July 2012

Standing Committee Report on Companies Bill,2011

SEE ATTACHMENT

Standing Committee Report on Companies Bill 2011
The Companies Bill, 2011 introduced in Lok Sabha on 14 December, 2011, was referred to the standing Committee on 5 January, 2012 for examination and report thereon, by the Hon'ble Lok Sabha Speaker. The standing committee headed by Shri Yaswant Sinha after several meeting and deliberations have submitted their much awaited report to the speaker on 26th June 2012.

The key contents of the report are:
  1. Report of MCA on the treatment of various recommendations of the Standing Committee on their earlier report on Companies Bill 2009, in the Companies Bill 2011.
  2. Comments of MCA on various suggestions received by the Standing Committee from the stakeholders during their their deliberation on the Companies Bill 2011.
  3. Observations & recommendations of the Standing Committee on the Companies Bill 2011.

The report of Standing Committee has raised fresh hopes of introduction of the Companies Bill 2011 in the monsoon session of the Parliament and which if passed this time , will lead to begining of new chapter for India Inc and  plethora of opportunities for professionals.


Draft GAAR Rules

Dear Members,
Vide letter dated 28.06.2012, the Director General of Income-tax has issued draft guidelines in respect of the General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAAR). GAAR is scheduled to become applicable w.e.f. 1.4.2013. The guidelines contain illustrations to explain how the GAAR provisions will apply together the draft of the forms required to be filled in. Comments can be forwarded till 20.07.2012

Cess Applicable on ST


Circular No. 160/11/2012-ST
F.No.334/1/2012-TRU
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Department of Revenue
Central Board of Excise & Customs
(Tax Research Unit)
*****
Room No. 153, North Block,
New Delhi, 29th June, 2012.
To
            Chief Commissioners of Customs and Central Excise (All)
            Chief Commissioners of Central Excise & Service Tax (All)
            Directors General of Service Tax/Central Excise Intelligence/Audit
            Commissioners of Central Excise & Service Tax (All)
            Commissioners of Service Tax (All)
            Commissioners of Customs and Central Excise (All)
           
Madam/Sir,


Subject: Applicability of provisions of the Finance Act, 2004 relating to education cess and the Finance Act, 2007 relating to secondary and higher education cess– regarding.        


            There has been some doubt regarding the applicability of provisions of the Finance Act, 2004 relating to education cess and the Finance Act, 2007 relating to secondary and higher education cess as the concerned Acts make reference to section 66 of the Finance Act, 1994, which shall cease to have effect from July 1, 2012.  In this connection, as also in general, you may kindly refer to the sub-section (1) of section 8 of the General Clauses Act, 1897 which reads as under:

"Where this Act, or any Central Act or Regulation made after reference to the commencement of this Act, repeals and re-enacts, with or without modification, any provision of a former enactment, then references in any other enactment or in any instrument to the provision so repealed shall, unless a different intention appears, be construed as references to the provisions so re-enacted."

            Thus any reference to section 66 of the Finance Act, 1994 shall be construed as reference to the newly re-enacted provision i.e. section 66B of the same Act.  Despite the stated position of law, the matter has been settled by the issue of Removal of Difficulties Order No. 2/2012 dated 29.06.2012.

2. This circular may be communicated to the field formations and service tax assessees through Public Notice/Trade Notice. Hindi version would follow.

Yours faithfully,

(S. Jayaprahasam)
Technical Officer (TRU)
Tel/Fax: 011-23092037

Form 23B- Fee Payable to ROC

Form 23B

Every statutory auditor appointed by the company in the Annual General Meeting under section 224(1) of the Companies Act, 1956 in this form has to intimate whether he has accepted the appointment or not to the concerned Registrar of Companies, , within 30 days of the intimation received from the company by the auditor.

Earlier, the form was filed free of cost, but now it has to be filed through MCA 21, as per the fees mentioned in Schedule X of the Companies Act, 1956 



IndianCAs: Shocking News (No cap likely on audit firms’ clients in Cos Bill)

 

The big four audit firms can breathe easy as the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has decided there will be no cap on the number of companies an audit firm can take on as clients.

A source in the government told The Indian Express that the ministry has decided to drop the recomendation of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance to restrict the number of companies beyond which audit firms shall not be auditors.

It is also likely to retain the current definition of listed companies instead of the narrower definition of listing suggested by the the committee, viz. an alteration to include a reference to equities and in the case of debt, of having been issued to public.

The current definition instead makes no such distinction and says a company is listed if any of its securities, equity or debt are traded in a stock exchange.

The broader definition has helped the government in the case of Sahara debentures for instance as they were treated as listed and hence under the purview of Sebi. Despite the changes the ministry is hopeful the amended Companies Bill would be able to sail through in the monsoon session.

On auditors, the standing committee in its report on the Bill, under Clause 141 (3), has suggested that the government should prescribe the number of companies beyond which a person shall not be appointed as an auditor. But the cap will run through for the number of companies an individual auditor can service, the source said.

For this purpose the ministry is expected to circulate a Cabinet note on the Bill by the end of this week after making the changes from the standing committee report.
Shared by - Vivek Khurana <khuranavivekca@yahoo.com>

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IndianCAs: Framework for audit of Gram Panchayat accounts by CAs [1 Attachment]

 
[Attachment(s) from Ashwin Nagar included below]
Useful information shared by Irani Sarosh.
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Subject: Draft Framework for audit of Gram Panchayat accounts by CAs

Dear Convenors / Dy. Convenors,

Our study circle founder member, Arun Anandagiri and myself had the opportunity to meet the Union Minister for Rural Development, Shri Jairam Ramesh on Tuesday in New Delhi.

During the course of our meeting he discussed the important role that Chartered Accountants could play in proper implementation of one of the flagship schemes of the Government - National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGA). He shared with us the draft framework that is being put into place for audits to be conducted by CA's to enforce transparency and accountability at the gram panchayat level in regard to the MGNREGA expenditures, that run into lakhs of crores of rupees. The selection of CA's for this initiative is supposed to be completed before March 2013. Further the CA's are supposed to commence the certification process from May 2013 and submit all the Reports by end July 2013. The indicative check list of the audit and the Certificate format is attached herewith.

We are of the opinion that our profession should rise to this challenge and truly show that we are "Partners in National Building." Hope you find the same useful and circulate it among members at large.

Regards,
Irani Sarosh.
Dy. Convenor
Pune West Study Circle





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CLARIFICATION ON SERVICE TAX ON REMITTANCES

CLARIFICATION ON SERVICE TAX ON REMITTANCES
CIRCULAR NO. 163/14/2012-ST, DATED 10-7-2012
Concerns have been expressed in various forums regarding the leviability of service tax on the remittance of foreign currency in India from overseas.
2. The matter has been examined and it is clarified that there is no service tax per se on the amount of foreign currency remitted to India from overseas. In the negative list regime, 'service' has been defined in clause (44) of section 65B of the Finance Act 1994, as amended, which excludes transaction in money. As the amount of remittance comprises money, the activity does not comprise a 'service' and thus not subjected to service tax.
3. In case any fee or conversion charges are levied for sending such money, they are also not liable to service tax as the person sending the money and the company conducting the remittance are located outside India. In terms of the Place of Provision of Services Rules, 2012, such services are deemed to be provided outside India and thus not liable to service tax.
4. It is further clarified that even the Indian counterpart bank or financial institution who charges the foreign bank or any other entity for the services provided at the receiving end, is not liable to service tax as the place of provision of such service shall be the location of the recipient of the service,i.e. outside India, in terms of Rule 3 of the Place of Provision of Services Rules, 2012.
5. This Circular may be communicated to the field formations and service tax assessees, through Public Notice/ Trade Notice.


Empanel as Concurrent Auditors

BANK OF MAHARASHTRA invites online applications from practicing firms of Chartered Accountants, in the prescribed format, who are willing to...