The Commission would review tax laws, existing mechanism of dispute resolution and methods to widen tax base and suggest ways for a stable and non-adversarial tax administration
The union government on Monday set up Tax Administration Reform Commission (TARC), a high-level panel under the chairmanship of Parthasarathi Shome to review tax laws and suggest ways for a stable and non-adversarial tax administration.
The seven members TARC will have 18 months tenure to suggest various measures including appropriate organisational structure for tax governance.
The terms of reference of the Commission include a review of the existing mechanism of dispute resolution and methods to widen tax base.
Further the TARC would recommend measures to strengthen inter-agency information sharing between Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), Enforcement Directorate (ED), and also with the banking and financial sector.
It would also look at mechanism for grievance redressal, timely disbursal of tax refunds and duty drawbacks.
In his Budget speech, finance minister P Chidambaram, had said, “An emerging economy must have a tax system that reflects best global practises. I propose to set up a TARC to review the application of tax policies and tax laws and submit periodic reports that can be implemented to strengthen the capacity of our tax system”.
Earlier this month, the Cabinet had approved setting up of TARC.
After streamlining across its TV channels, the TV18 group is reportedly shutting some of its web properties and drastically reducing staff strength
Web18 Software Services Ltd, or Web18, the Internet and mobile arm of Network18, has reportedly decided to close several of its web properties and cut down staff strength to just 15%. According to sources, employees were handed over three months’ severance package and asked not to report for duty from 26th August. The web properties that are likely to be shut down includes, in.com and CommoditiesControl.com while others will be kept alive nominally. Moneycontrol.com, the flagship property will be run by a handful of staff, sources said.
This follows the move by the television arm of Network18, which last week handed out pink slips to hundreds of employees, including cameramen, technicians, reporters, news anchors and producers across its channels.
Web18 has a variety of information and transactional services based on the Internet. This includes, In.com, Moneycontrol.com, Cricketnext.com, CommoditiesControl.com, PowerYourTrade.com, Tech2.com, Biztech2.com, IBNLive.com, Compareindia.com, Storeguru.com (now In.com Shop), Indiaearnings.com, JobStreet.com, Indiwo.com, Buzz18.com, Josh18.com, Yatra.com and BookMyShow.com.
The TV18 group holds 85% stake in Web18 Holdings while the remaining is held by Global Broadcast News Network, a part of the group.
According to a report from NewsLaundry.com, the mass terminations were supposedly decided in a Macau offsite earlier this year where managing director Raghav Bahl had told his marketing team that they do not need any specialist journalists. In fact, owing to the same formula of no-need-of-specialists CNN IBN’s Special Investigation team headed by VK Shashikumar was packed up a year earlier. Similarly, Bahar Dutt and her environmental reporting team have also been asked to leave, the report said.
The report also mentioned that the downsizing was believed to have an adverse impact on some of Network 18’s online ventures and Moneycontrol.com was the next in queue. "Its operations are being streamlined and the office is shifting to Parel from Matunga. The downsizing is believed to be because the website’s traffic has plummeted substantially. Forbes India which saw the rather ugly exit of its four editors a few months back, might be shut down permanently," the report says. The group has wide presence in print, internet and television. It has been making losses in almost all its ventures. The group is now controlled by Mukesh Ambani through a complicated arrangement that has bypassed takeover norms.
The market regulator is also framing a new set of norms to enable it to conduct search and seizure operations and recover unlawful gains through disgorgement orders
Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has started the process of framing new regulations and putting in place infrastructure to exercise newly granted powers through the Securities Laws Ordinance, including those related to information collection, search and seizure operations and disgorgement orders.
Besides, the SEBI is preparing internal guidelines to exercise the powers given to it through the Securities Laws (Amendment) Ordinance.
The proposed actions, approved by SEBI's board, include entering into agreements with foreign and domestic regulators to seek information from them about ongoing probes, sources said. In the case of foreign regulators, prior approval of the central government would be taken on a case-to-case basis.
SEBI will also frame a new set of norms to enable it to conduct search and seizure operations and recover unlawful gains through disgorgement orders.
The new powers are aimed at making SEBI more effective in protecting investors' interests and helping it to better regulate the market, including enforcement of securities laws.
SEBI is also preparing guidelines for its officers for search and seizure operations and recovering amounts through attachment and sale of assets. Greater manpower with legal background will be deployed and they will be provided training and other infrastructure.
The regulator is also framing regulations for utilisation of disgorged amounts credited to the Investor Education and Protection Fund.
SEBI is amending the Collective Investment Schemes (CIS) Regulations, 1999, to bring any scheme or arrangement involving unauthorised pooling of money within the ambit of CIS to protect the interests of investors and the securities market. This proposal has been separately approved by the SEBI board and a notification in this regard would be issued soon.
The market watchdog will put in place specific regulations for the procedure of settlement proceedings.
For speedy trial of offences under SEBI regulations, the regulator is taking up the issue with the central government to establish or designate special courts.