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I-T starts probe against political parties, trusts to check tax evasion
Political parties, a variety of charitable organisations, scientific research associations, educational institutes and certain hospitals have been found to have 'huge receipts' of funds by way of donations, contributions and payments

New Delhi: The Income Tax (I-T) department has launched a probe against a number of political parties as well as charitable and religious trusts after it found that they were receiving "huge funds" beyond the exemption cap for filing tax returns, reports PTI.
 
The department has compiled a list of those non-filers of I-T returns who are exempted to pay tax up to a certain limit of funds under Section 139 of the Income Tax Act.
 
Political parties, a variety of charitable organisations, scientific research associations, educational institutes and certain hospitals have been found to have "huge receipts" of funds by way of donations, contributions and payments in an I-T analysis report.
 
According to the report, a number of organisations under this exempted category are "potential assesses" but the I-T could not scrutinise their accounts as they do not file returns as mandated under the Act.
 
"Any such exempted organisation has to file I-T return if it exceeds the threshold of income that was set for the charitable organisation category. But many institutions are not doing so," sources privy to the development said.
 
An earlier I-T probe had found that close to 300 registered political parties in the country had never filed their tax returns, which they should be doing as they receive large donations from a host of contributors, they said.
 
"By scrutinising these returns and donations, not only the organisation which is violating the exemption norms could be checked, but also the department will get to know the people who are making undercover donations," I-T sources said.
 
The department has already begun an exercise asking its exemptions directorates across the country to track such bodies and develop actionable information about the source and quantity of funds received by them.
 
"The enforcement units of the department have been asked to check non-filers of returns categories to look for possible cases of tax evasion," a senior I-T official said.

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Reddy's diesel tax proposal 'highly flawed' says Praful Patel
The automobile industry has also opposed to the idea of diesel vehicles being taxed more, saying such a move will hurt the industry which is already reeling under a slump and future investments could also be hurt

New Delhi: Terming Oil Minister Jaipal Reddy's proposal of levying additional duty of up to Rs2.55 lakh on diesel cars as 'highly flawed', Heavy Industry Minister Praful Patel has written a letter to Finance Ministry saying such a move was 'unjustified', reports PTI.
 
In a letter to Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Patel said: "This would amount to an unjustified abnormal hike in excise duty in case of small diesel cars which would definitely be resented by the consumers."
 
He was referring to Reddy's recommendation to the Finance Ministry suggesting a hike in excise duty on diesel vehicles ranging between Rs1.70 lakh and Rs2.55 lakh to make up for subsidised fuel being used in personal vehicles.
 
Patel further said: "I personally feel that the whole rationale of imposing a higher duty on a particular segment of the automotive sector, namely diesel cars, is highly flawed.."
 
He said additional taxes on diesel vehicles was not consistent with the ministry's policy and initiatives for developing the auto sector.
 
"What such a move is more likely to do, I feel, is to deflate the demand and growth of the diesel car segment also and this would lead to negative sales trajectory for the passenger car market as a whole," Patel said.
 
The Finance Ministry has been mulling over imposing more levy on diesel vehicles, a move which may discourage consumption of subsidised fuel by personal vehicle owners.
 
Asking Mukherjee not to impose any additional duty on diesel cars, he said if such a move was taken up "it would further lead to a slowdown in the growth of the auto sector in specific and the industrial growth rate in general which is a cause of concern for the government."
 
Earlier, Patel had twice taken up the issue with the Finance Minister.
 
The automobile industry is opposed to the idea of diesel vehicles being taxed more, saying such a move will hurt the industry which is already reeling under a slump and future investments could also be hurt.
 
Last week, the Department of Heavy Industry had submitted its report to the Finance Ministry opposing the proposal.
 
Besides, the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) submitted its report to the ministry stating production data of diesel cars.
 
Car sales in India grew at the slowest pace in seven months during May at 2.8% and stood at 1,63,229 units as against 1,58,809 units in the same month last year.
 
At present, excise duties on passenger cars range between 12% and 27% depending on engine size and length of the vehicle.

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COMMENTS

DILIP GANDHI

5 years ago

The regulator is making cable TV go digital which will benefit broadcasters but what about consumers’ interests, asks Dr Prakash Hebalkar !!!

If Govt. is not looking to the consumers' interest, who else will see the consumers' interest. It is a matter of sorrow that Govt., has to issue directive for minimum rent and for others tvs should be free and the same should not be chargeable.

Odisha starts transferring 1,500 acres to Posco

Odisha has already transferred 500 acres to Posco for setting up the proposed plant, which has an original capacity target of 12 mt, involving an investment of Rs52,000 crore

Mumbai: After seven years of delay, the Posco steel project will start rolling soon as Odisha has started transferring around 1,500 acres to the Korean steel major to set up an 8-million tonne plant in the first phase, Odisha Steel and Mines Minister Raghunath Mohanty said on Wednesday, reports PTI.

However, the minister did not specify a time frame under which the land transfer will be completed.

Meanwhile, the state will also soon sign a tri-partite agreement with Posco India and Posco to revive the memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Korean steel major, which had lapsed since June 2010, the minister said.

"Transfer of around 1,500 acres is underway and we hope the tri-partite agreement with the steel company will be signed soon," Mohanty told PTI over phone from Bhubaneswar.

Earlier, after consulations with the government, Posco had decided to reduce its land requirement to 2,700 acres from over 4,000 acres.

The state has already transferred 500 acres to the company for setting up the proposed plant, which has an orignal capacity target of 12 mt, involving an investment of Rs52,000 crore, making it the sinlge largest FDI in the country.

In view of the land scarsity, the company has also decided to build an 8-mt plant in the first phase and scale it up to 12 mt later.

"They have agreed to build an 8 mt steel plant in the first phase, which will be done in two tranches of 4 mt each," Mohanty said.

The minister said Posco has also agreed to three major conditions which include employing a certain percentage of local people in the proposed plant, setting up downstream industries near the project and swapping of iron ore within the country.

"The steel company has agreed to swap the iron ore within the state or within the country," the minister said.

Posco had earlier asked for swapping high alumina content iron ore found in the Khandadhar mines, which is in legal row now, with better quality ore from abroad.

Mohanty also said the boundary wall work has already started in the project site and full-fledge work will start soon.

"Construction of boundary wall work has already started and we hope that after the tri-partite agreement and the land transfer, full fledge work will begin at the proejct site," he said.

The Rs52,000-crore Posco project has been stuck for the past seven years, on the back of local opposition to land acquisition coupled with pending environment approvals.

However, the minister said local opposition to the project is fading and the long-pending project will soon start.

"I think, after slashing of land requirement and iron ore swapping issue, local opposition to the project is fading," Mohanty said.

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