Respected Professional Colleagues,

After a long wait and in consideration of various representations all over the country, 23rd meeting of GST Council has decided to ease the return filing process for both (small & larger) businesses. Certain facilitative measures have been recommended for the ease of taxpayers, some of them are :

1. All taxpayers are required to file monthly return in Form GSTR-3B along with payment of tax by 20th of the succeeding month till March, 2018.

2. Taxpayers whose annual aggregate turnover is up to ₹ 1.5 crore are required to file GSTR-1 on quarterly basis.

3. Taxpayers whose aggregate turnover is above ₹ 1.5 crore are required to file GSTR-1 on monthly basis.

4. The time period for filing GSTR-2 & GSTR-3 for the month of July, 2017 to March, 2018 would be worked out by a committee of officers and till then the taxpayers are not required to file GSTR-2 & GSTR-3.

5. Late fee paid by the taxpayer for GSTR-3B for the month of July, August & September, 2017 have been waived and the same will be re-credited to their Electronic Cash Ledger under “Tax” head instead “Fee” head.

6. From October, 2017 onwards, the amount of late fee payable by taxpayer shall be
₹ 20/- per day if tax liability for the month is “Nil” (₹ 10/- per day each under CGST and SGST Acts).

7. A facility of manual filing of application for advance ruling is being introduced for the time being.

8. It has been decided to exempt suppliers providing services through an E-commerce Platform from obtaining compulsory registration, provided their aggregate turnover does not exceed
₹ 20 lakh.

9. The due date of TRAN-1 has been extended to December 31, 2017 and due date for filing of GSTR-4 for the quarter July to September, 2017 has been extended to December 24, 2017.

10. Tax rate on 178 out of current 228 items will be reduced from 28% to 18% w.e.f. November, 15. Only 50 items will remain under 28% tax slab. Certain items with tax rates reduced to “Nil” from 5%.

11. All standalone restaurants irrespective of air-conditioned or otherwise, will attract 5% GST without input tax credit. Restaurants in hotel premises having declared room tariff of less than
₹ 7,500/- per room per day will attract GST of 5% without ITC.

12. It has been decided that maximum “Annual Turnover” eligibility for composition scheme will be increased to
₹ 2 crore from the present limit of ₹ 1 crore in the CGST Act. However, eligibility for composition will be increased from
₹ 1 crore to ₹ 1.5 crore p.a. for the time being.

Hon’ble Prime Minister have brought many structural reforms in ease of doing business. The World Bank has released the 2018 version of its Ease of Doing Business Index. It’s a matter of great pride for us that India has positioned at 100th rank amongst 190 countries jumping by 30th position. World Bank has said “India is one country which has been undertaking structural reforms”.

On income tax side, Hon’ble Supreme Court has recently pronounced one important judgment on 12th October, 2017 in the case of CIT v. M/s Gemini Distilleries that CBDT cannot issue any circular having retrospective operation. This observation has come in view of the fact that various pending cases having low tax effect had been disposed of by the various Courts. Supreme Court held that the circulars issued by CBDT prescribing limit of tax effect cannot apply to pending cases. In view of this judgment, there is an apprehension that CBDT might get the cases reopened in the Court which had been disposed of due to low tax effect.

Delhi High Court in the case of Chamber of Tax Consultant v. Union of India have rendered one important judgment in which, in order to preserve constitutionality of ICDs, reads down section 145(2) of Income-tax Act, restricts power of Central Government to notify ICDs so as to ensure that they do not override binding judicial precedence or provisions of the Act. Hon’ble High Court strikes down ICDs I, II, III, VI, VII, Part-A of ICDs VIII as ultra vires of the Act/contrary to settled position of law as laid down by Supreme Court, also observes that the tax cannot be levied by way of an executive action; tax cannot also be levied by way of administrative instructions. It is ruled that the power u/s. 145(2) cannot permit changing the basic principles of accounting recognised in various provisions of Income-tax Act, unless amendments are carried out in the Act itself. My special thanks to Shri Vipul Joshi, the Treasurer for successfully pleading and assisting in this matter.

Friends, your Federation had filed one PIL before the Hon’ble Delhi High Court challenging the amendments introduced by the Finance Act, 2017 regarding merging reorganising and restructuring the various Tribunals and also the rules framed thereunder on the ground that they violate independence of judiciary and impinge upon the doctrine of separation of powers and the matter is listed for 4th December, 2017. In one such similar PIL before Supreme Court, Government has conceded that it will take appropriate steps to bring selection process to Tribunals in consonance with the Supreme Court judgment in the case of R Gandhi.

Lastly, I congratulate the organisers of Mangaluru Conference for organising a very educative Conference and wish a great success to the Jabalpur Conference.

Friends to conclude, let us recall Swami Vivekananda when he said

“This life is short, the vanities of the world are transient but they alone live who live for others. Great work requires great and persistent effort for a long time. Character has to be established through a thousand stumbles”.

With Best Regards

Prem Lata Bansal
National President

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