My beloved and respected brothers and sisters in the Federation and at the Bar.
Summer vacation has come to an end for the High Courts in southern parts of the country, while the High Courts in the other parts of the country would be resuming in the first week of July, 2016. In deference to the mention by us before the first Division Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, the entry tax appeals, around 6000-8000 touching upon the constitutional validity is directed to be listed before Larger constitutional bench comprising of 9 learned judges in the 3rd week of July, 2016 and we are hopeful that when once the reference is answered by the larger bench, there is every possibility of final resolution on the impasse involved therein.
As expected the numerical magic in the Upper House of the Parliament due to certain equations has turned in favour of the Government on account of the State elections recently held. It appears that the Constitutional amendment for adverting GST regime may be once again tried in the winter session of the Parliament to facilitate implementation of the much awaited GST in the country from 1-4-2017. A model draft of GST has been uploaded on the portal of Finance Ministry and it also appears that the same has been transmitted to the Empowerment Committee of State Finance Ministers for necessary discussions and deliberations and we are also given to understand that a preliminary round is complete on 15th and 16th of this month and second round is likely to take place sometime in mid July. We have been receiving many a call and message pointing out defects, infirmities and loose ends in the draft bill which is reported to adversely effect the tax practitioner community in the country which has been in practice since 1922 in terms of Income-tax Act, 1922 and Madras General Sales Tax as well as CP & Bearer tax laws. That apart, to a greater extent legal professionals may also get effected.
Time has come for all categories of tax practitioners throughout the country to unite together and fight their cause for inclusion both as authorised representatives as also for similar extended authorisation for audit along with other professionals as audit in GST, a codification of Indirect Tax laws is entirely different from the Direct Tax law audit under Income Tax Act. We have also directed the Direct Taxes Representation Committee of the Federation to meet and discuss on the bill immediately and gather the views of the members and consolidate such views into a report so as to present the views of the Federation to the Hon’ble Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley, Hon’ble Law Minister Sri. D.V. Sadananda Gowda and all the Hon’ble Chief Ministers of the respective States as the tax practitioners fraternity according to the provisions of the Draft bill strongly believe that the GST draft bill shave place nearly 38 lakhs people in the country unemployed which is a serious matter that has to be taken up by the Federation with the concerned Ministries with greater amount of concern.
Friends, as far as the Federation is concerned, we will have a necessary and suitable dialogue with all the stakeholders and meet the Hon’ble Ministries in the Central Government as well as all the Chief Ministers and would employee all sincere and honest efforts to support and safeguard the interest of the tax practitioners community in GST Regime as the Federation is a fabric of all categories of practitioners .
We once again renew our request to all the leaders in the Federation to bring these adversary circumstance arising out of GST draft bill to the notice of their local people representatives for ease out of the situation and also strengthen the hands of the Federation for joining the fold of the Federation which would give encouragement, enthusiasm, moral support and courage to us working for a great cause.
Jai Hind ||
Dr. M. V. K. Moorthy