By CA. Gaurav Gandhi - April 5, 2020
With the ongoing spread of the pandemic COVID-19 throughout the world of which India has been able to cope up much but the lockdown, a measure which is a breakthrough in the everyday lives called for various relief measures from the Finance angle too. Recently, FinMin in her press conference announced various relaxations in the provisions of different laws on 31st March 2020. However, due to Parliament not in session, such changes and relaxations have been introduced through a special ordinance called THE TAXATION AND OTHER LAWS (RELAXATION OF CERTAIN PROVISIONS) ORDINANCE, 2020.
The detailed analysis of such provision is as follows:
(A) Extension of following Due Dates under below mentioned laws to 30th June 2020
Any timeline under the below mentioned laws :
laws falling during the period from the 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020 or such other date as the Central Government may specify in this behalf for the completion or compliance of action such as‑
Further, where any due date has been specified in or prescribed or notified under these Acts for payment of any amount towards tax or levy, by whatever name called, falls during the period from 20th March 2020 to 29th June 2020 or such other date as the Central Government may specify, and such amount has not been paid within such date but paid on or before the 30th June 2020 or such other date after the 30th day of June, 2020 as the Central Government may, by notification, specified date, then, notwithstanding anything contained in the specified Act,‑
(a) the rate of interest payable in respect of such amount for the period of delay shall not exceed 3/4% for every month or part thereof;
(b) no penalty shall be levied and no prosecution shall be sanctioned in respect of such amount for the period of delay.
Note that “the period of delay” means the period between the due date and the date on which the amount has been paid.
(B) Amendments specific to Income Tax Act.
1. Extension of timelines under Income Tax. Act 1961 w.r.t following:
Where the completion or compliance of following actions have not been made within the prescribed time, then, the time limit for completion or compliance of such action shall, notwithstanding anything contained in the specified Act, is extended to the 30th June, 2020, or such other date as the Central Government may, by notification, specify in this behalf:
However, Central Government may specify different dates for completion or compliance of different actions.
2. Amendments applicable w.e.f. 1st April 2020‑
(C) AMENDMENTS TO THE DIRECT TAX VIVAD SE VISHWAS ACT
Amendment of section 3 of Act 3 of 2020.
In section 3 of the Direct Tax Vivad Se Vishwas Act, 2020, ‑
(D) RELAXATION OF TIME LIMIT UNDER CERTAIN INDIRECT TAX LAWS
1. Central Excise Act, 1944, Customs Act, 1962, Customs Tariff Act, 1975 and Finance Act, 1994.
Notwithstanding anything contained in these laws, as it stood prior to its omission vide section 173 of CGST Act, 2017 with effect from the 1st July 2017, any time limit specified therein, or notified which falls during the period from the 20th day of March, 2020 to the 29th day of June, 2020 or such other date after the 29th day of June, 2020 as the Central Government may, by notification, specify, for the completion or compliance of such action as regards to‑
(a) completion of any proceeding or issuance of any order, notice, intimation, notification or sanction or approval, by whatever name called, by any authority, commission, tribunal, by whatever name called; or
(b) filing of any appeal, reply or application or furnishing of any report, document, return or statement, by whatever name called,
shall stand extended to the 30th June 2020 or such other date after the 30th day of June, 2020 as the Central Government may, by notification, specify in this behalf. Provided that the Central Government may specify different dates for completion or compliance of different actions under clause (a) or clause (b).
(E) AMENDMENT TO THE FINANCE ACT (NO. 2), 2019
1. Amendment of section 127 of Act 23 of 2019 i.e. LEGACY DISPUTE RESOLUTION Scheme
(i) Section 127(1) an extension of is proposed in LEGACY DISPUTE RESOLUTION Scheme from the existing time limit of “within a period of sixty days from the date of receipt of the said declaration”, to on or before the 31′ day of May, 2020”.
(ii) in section 127(2), for time limit of issue of notice due to discrepancy in the amounts payable as determined by the Department than that as estimated by declarant, time limit has been extended from “within thirty days of the date of receipt of the declaration”, to “on or before the 1st day of May, 2020”
(iii) in section 127(4), with respect to the issue of order in electronic form for the amount determined, the timelimit “within a period of sixty days from the date of receipt of the declaration”, is extended to “on or before the 31st day of May, 2020”.
(iv) in section 127(5), for the payment of such amount determined, time limit of “within a period of thirty days from the date of issue of such statement”, is extended to “on or before the 30th June, 2020”
(F) AMENDMENT TO THE CENTRAL GOODS AND SERVICES TAX ACT, 2017
Insertion of new section 168A in Act: Power of Government to extend time limit in special circumstances. After section 168 of the CGST Act, 2017, the following section shall be inserted, namely:
Section : 168A -
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, the Government may, on the recommendations of the Council, by notification, extend the time limit specified in, or prescribed or notified under, this Act in respect of actions which cannot be completed or complied with due to force majeure.
(2) The power to issue notification under sub-section (1) shall include the power to give retrospective effect to such notification from a date not earlier than the date of commencement of this Act.
Explanation.— For the purposes of this section, the expression “force majeure” means a case of war, epidemic, flood, drought, fire, cyclone, earthquake or any other calamity caused by nature or otherwise affecting the implementation of any of the provisions of this Act.’ .
We hope that the aforemnentioned analysis was clear and useful.