by Punit Shah, Partner, Dhruva Advisors LPP
The Business Community in India as well as Foreign investors will certainly have a very high expectation from the new government. The current NDA government had commenced and implemented several reforms such as GST, IBC etc., however there have been several issues and hurdles in implementing these reforms such as complexity of GST regime, multiplicity of GST rates etc. Similarly under IBC reforms, the experience has not been fully satisfactory in terms of the speed and the manner of the resolution of the cases. It would be an expectation that these difficulties are addressed under the current regime of the NDA government.
In spite of several assurances by the UPA as well as the NDA Governments, the Tax Administration and the scenario of the tax litigation with the revenue authorities have not substantially improved. The current NDA Government and the CBDT has made some efforts in clarifying applicability of several Tax provisions by way of issue of circulars. However, there remains several ambiguities in interpretation of the Tax Laws, which need to be clarified. Similarly one of the stated objectives of the Government was to reduce tax litigation by undertaking several measures. Although a few steps have been taken such as non-filing of appeals for smaller amounts of litigation, the same doesn't seem adequate considering the number of cases pending and amounts involved in the current litigation at various levels of judiciary. Measures such as activating AAR regime, speedier disposal of cases by setting up additional benches etc. would need to be undertaken.
Lastly the NDA Government has laid out a road-map to reduction of tax rates coupled with elimination of exemption / deduction in most cases. Some measures have been taken to reduce tax rates in certain cases and some rationalization has already happened in the areas of exemption / deductions; however, this process needs to be taken to its logical conclusion.”