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Amendments in Maharashtra State Tax on Profession, Trade, Callings and Employments Act, 1975

April 27, 2017
In order to give effect to the announcements made by the Finance Minister of Maharashtra, certain amendments have been made to the Maharashtra State Tax on Profession, Trade, Callings and Employments Act, 1975. The Maharashtra Act No. XXXI of 2017 is was published in the Official Gazette on April 15, 2017 and the salient features of the amendments were explained in the Trade Circular No.11T of 2017 dated April 20, 2017. Consequential to the amendments to the Maharashtra State Tax on Profession, Trade, Callings and Employments Act, 1975 corresponding rules are amended and the following notifications are issued on April 19, 2017: Notification No. PFT- 2017/C.R. 20A/Taxation-3 Notification No. PFT-2017/C.R. 20B/ Taxation-3 Notification No. PFT-2017/C.R. 20C/Taxation-3. The above notifications provide for: Exemption from payment of late fee: To encourage filing of returns it is decided to provide for exemption of late fee subject to certain conditions. Accordingly Government Notification No. PFT­2014/CR-38/Taxation-3, dated August 21, 2014 is amended. The benefit of exemption of whole of late fee is available to an employer who files return along with the payment of tax for any of the periods upto the March 31, 2017, on or before September 30, 2017. Liability to deduct and pay tax in certain cases (section 4B): By a newly inserted section 4B, the State Government has been empowered to issue a notification to provide that the organisations, shall deduct tax out of the amount of commission payable to the agents. The notification is being issued by the State Government. The class of persons (organisations), who shall be liable to deduct tax and the agents from whose commission, the tax is to be deducted would be specified in the notification. A new entry 1A has been inserted in Schedule I to cover the agents, notified under section 4B. Such agents would be liable to pay Rs. 2,500 per annum. The manner in which the deduction is to be made by the organisation giving commission shall be specified in the notification, to be issued u/s 48. All the provisions, regarding an employer and an employee shall be deemed to be applicable to such organisation and its agents. The organisation, which appoints such agents, shall be liable to deduct and pay tax and hence these agents may apply for the cancellation of the enrolment certificate. It may be noted that no agent shall be liable to pay tax in excess of Rs. 2,500. Change in rate of interest under Profession Tax Act: Every employer/enrolled person is required to pay tax within the prescribed time. If payment of such tax is delayed then such employer/enrolled person is liable to pay interest under Section 9 of Profession Tax Act. By the amendment to Section 9(2) the powers are taken by State Government to prescribe the rates of interest by rule. Accordingly the State Government has issued Notification No.PFT­2317/C.R. 20C/Taxation-3 by virtue of which, new Rule 11C-1 is inserted to prescribe the rates of interest. The said amendment is effective from May 1, 2017. The

Further Extension of Filing Monthly and Quarterly Return under Maharashtra VAT

April 27, 2017
The State Government of Maharashtra on April 26, 2017 has revised Para no. 6 in the Trade Circular 9T of 2017 dated April 1, 2017 giving the extended date for filing the returns under Maharashtra Value Added Tax Act, 2002 in new formats for the following return periods: Period Start Date Last Date for Uploading   Month: March 2017 April 1, 2017 May 3, 2017 Quarter: October 2016 to December 2016 April 1, 2017 April 29, 2017 Quarter: January 2017 to March 2017 April 11, 2017 May 15,2017   [Trade Circular 14T of 2017] URL: http://www.mahavat.gov.in/Mahavat/MyFold/KNOWLEDGE%20CENTER/TRADE%20CIRCULARS/DateWise/KNOW_TRADEC_DW_MVAT/KNOW_TRADEC_DW_MVAT_04_26_17_0_39_1PM.pdf

Government extends the time period for facilitation of scheme for Startups to facilitate Intellectual Property Protection

April 27, 2017
Government has issued scheme for startups to facilitate Intellectual Property Protection (SIPP). The scheme for Startups Intellectual Property Protection (SIPP) is envisaged to facilitate protection of Patents, Trademark and Designs of innovative and interested startups. The scheme of SIPP aims to promote awareness and adoption of Intellectual Property Rights amongst startups. The scheme is now being extended further for a period of 3 years from April 01, 2017 to March 31, 2020. The startups covered under this scheme will not be required to obtain certificate of an eligible business from the Inter-Ministerial Board of Certification. However, startups will be required to give a self-declaration that they have not availed funds under any other Government scheme for the purpose of paying the facilitator/ patent agent/ trademark agent for filing and prosecuting their IP application.   URL: http://www.ipindia.nic.in/writereaddata/Portal/News/323_1_Scheme_for_facilitating_start-ups.pdf    

Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology issues measures to curb online Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM)

April 27, 2017
Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology vide order dated April 18, 2017 has issued measures to curb online Child Abuse Material (CSAM). ISP’s having Cable Landing Station Gateways/ International Long Distance licenses in India shall be required to adopt and implement the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) resources on or before July 31, 2017 to prevent the distribution & transmission of online CSAM into India. All ISP’s shall continue to observe the existing due diligence requirements prescribed by Central Government , including the obligation to expeditiously remove or disable the access to any unlawful content brought to its notice by the authorities. [No. 1(3)/2016-CLFE] URL: http://meity.gov.in/writereaddata/files/Order%20regarding%20online%20CSAM.pdf

EPFO introduces Real Time System in EPFO Default management

April 27, 2017
Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has introduced the new ECR 2.0 for online collection of remittances of contribution through multi-banking. All the establishments/employers are hereby directed to use the newly introduced real time default management system. The salient features and sequence of action are as follows – An SMS alert shall be sent on 16th/17th of every month to those employers who have made at least one contribution during the last 3 months but failed to contribute during the month, informing the due date for payment and advising them to pay the EPF & other contributions to avoid damages and interest for late payment; Thereafter an e-Mail communication shall be sent between 20th to 25th of every month to all those balance establishments who had remitted any contributions during the last 3 months but have not remitted any contribution during the month; [No.: CAIU/011(52)16/Principal employer Portal & CAMS/722] URL: http://www.epfindia.com/site_docs/PDFs/Circulars/Y2017-2018/CAIU_Principal_Employer_722.pdf

DGFT issues amendment in Table ‘A’ of Schedule 2 and Appendix 3 of ITC (HS) Classification of Export and Import Items

April 27, 2017
Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) vide notification dated April 24, 2017 has revised ‘Appendix 3’ to Schedule- 2 of ITC (HS) Classification of Export and Import Items. The SCOMET (Special Chemicals, Organisms, Materials, Equipment and Technologies) list has been updated. The said notification shall come into force with effect from May 01, 2017. [Notification No. 5/2015-20] URL: http://dgft.gov.in/Exim/2000/NOT/NOT17/Notification%205-%20English.pdf

DGFT to Consider Application for Grant of License/Authorisation for Import of ‘Gold Dore’

April 27, 2017
Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has issued notice to all the traders & Export Promotion Councils (EPC) that all the applications for grant of license/authorisation for import of ‘Gold Dore’ shall be considered by DGFT with effect from  June 01, 2017. [F.No.01/53/162/Misc./AM17/PMO/M-4/IC] URL: http://dgft.gov.in/Exim/2000/TN/TN17/TN042018.pdf

DGFT issues amendment in Para 2 of the Handbook of Procedures, 2015-2020

April 27, 2017
Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) has issued amendments in Para’s’ 2.72, 2.73, 2.74, 2.81 & 2.82 and Appendix 2S of the Handbook of Procedures, 2015-2020. Provision for Maintenance of Records has been prescribed. Amendments have been made in Para 2.74 and Para 2.81 for adherence to various Multilateral Export Control Regimes and to clarify the licensing jurisdiction of various SCOMET categories. The time period to furnish written comments/views/No Objection by members of IMWG to DGFT has been reduced to 30 days. Revised formats for End use cum End User Certificate have been prescribed. [Public Notice No. 4/2015-20 F.No.01/91/171/73/AM16/EC] URL: http://dgft.gov.in/Exim/2000/PN/PN17/PN4-English.pdf

MCA provides Facilitation for Filing E-form IEPF-1

April 27, 2017
The Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has issued a clarification dated April 20, 2017 for online generation of Challans for offline payments regarding transfer of amount to Investor Education and Protection Fund (IEPF). As per IEPF (Accounting, Audit, Transfer and Refund) Rules, 2016, companies need to transfer the amount to IEPF and obtain Challans before filing of IEPF-1 Form. In various cases, MCA observed that Challans were not generated on MCA21 portal. To resolve this, MCA has suggested to companies which have transferred the amount to IEPF prior to December 15, 2016 and failed to generate Challans on MCA21 portal; thereby, unable to file Form IEPF-1 to follow the two steps process as under: Submission of Challans details to IEPF Authority on email ID – iepfa@mca.gov.in. The submission of details is to be submitted up to May 20, 2017. The data submitted will be processed by IEPF Authority and companies can submit required data for 30 days i.e. from June 5, 2017 to July 05, 2017. After this, MCA21 system will generate automated number which can be used as SRN for filing of IEPF-1 Form without any additional fees. URL: http://www.mca.gov.in/Ministry/pdf/Notification_20042017_1.pdf

Extension of Date of Submission of Half Yearly Service Tax Form

April 27, 2017
Due to the intermittent difficulties faced by assessees in accessing the ACES website on April 25, 2017, the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) has extended the date of submission of the Form ST-3 for the period from October 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017 till April 30, 2017. [ORDER NO: 1 /2017-Service Tax] URL: http://www.cbec.gov.in/resources//htdocs-servicetax/st-notifications/st-notifications-2017/stodr01-2017.pdf