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Cabinet approves changes in 'Vivad se Vishwas Bill' to reduce tax litigations

The Cabinet has decided to cover disputes pending in DRTs, Arbitration, Tribunal, Court cases, revisions issues, and all tax disputes under the scheme, says Union minister Prakash Javadekar

twitter-logoBusinessToday.In | October 28, 2020 | Updated 08:30 IST
Cabinet approves changes in 'Vivad se Vishwas Bill' to reduce tax litigations
Direct Tax Vivad se Vishwas Bill, 2020, was introduces by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Union Budget 2020

The Union Cabinet has given nod to changes in the 'Direct Tax Vivad se Vishwas (No dispute but trust) Bill, 2020' to increase its scope to cover litigations pending in various debt recovery tribunals (DRTs), Union minister Prakash Javadekar said on Wednesday.

The Bill, which was introduced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Union Budget 2020, seeks to provide resolution for disputed tax cases involving Rs 9.32 lakh crore. While presenting the Union Budget 2020-21, Sitharaman had said the scheme would resolve 4.83 lakh direct tax disputes pending in various tribunals, such as Commissioner (Appeals), ITATs, High Courts and the Supreme Court.

Talking to reporters after the cabinet meeting, Javadekar said the Cabinet has decided to cover disputes pending in DRTs, Arbitration, Tribunal, Court cases, revisions issues, and all tax disputes under the scheme.

Also Read: Vivad se Vishwas Bill tabled in Parliament; aims to resolve tax disputes worth Rs 9.32 lakh crore

Javadekar said that the decision has been taken on the basis of suggestions received from various stakeholders. "After the Union Budget, Finance Minister held discussion with stakeholders and sought suggestions from them. On the basis of suggestions, there are now new amendments," he said.

"Where the recovery is below Rs 5 crore those disputes will also be taken up in this scheme," he added.

Also Read: Govt to infuse Rs 2,500 crore in state-run insurance companies OICL, NICL, UIICL

He said that the whole purpose is to enlarge the scope of the Bill. The minister hoped that people will take advantage of the scheme to settle the tax disputes before March 31, 2020 as 10 per cent more will be charged for settlement of disputes after the end of the current financial year.

Last week, the Bill was tabled in the in Lok Sabha. The proposed bill will come into force on the date it receives the assent of the President. Introducing the Bill, Sitharaman had said the scheme would not be an open-ended scheme and can be availed for a limited time.

Under the scheme, taxpayers whose tax demands are locked in dispute in multiple forums can pay due taxes by March 31, 2020, and get complete waiver of interest and penalty. Those who avail this scheme after March 31, 2020, will have to pay some additional amount. The scheme will remain open till June 30, 2020.

By Chitranjan Kumar

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