Public Policy

Arun Jaitley says CBEC staff will have adequate work in GST regime

Finance minister allays concerns of Central Board of Excise and Customs officials threatened with redundancy under the goods and services tax regime. He stated that the advent of technology will minimize the interaction between assessee and assessor and the level of discretion given to taxmen. Read about it here.

Housing sector biggest beneficiary of demonetisation: Venkaiah Naidu 

Housing sector is the biggest beneficiary of demonetisation as interest rates have fallen; Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu today said and expressed hope that Finance Minister will announce more incentives for the sector in the Budget on February 1. Taking a jibe on commentators who cast doubts on benefits to government from demonetisation as INR 15 lakh Crore have come back into the system, Naidu said this would lead to more people coming under the tax net. More here.

Importers worried over service tax on ocean freight: EEPC 

The Finance Ministry order levying 4.5 per cent service tax on ocean freight has come as a “bolt from the blue” for the importers and exporters and will adversely impact the domestic trade, Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC) has said.

“As a result of the January 12 notification by the Revenue Department, import ocean freight and ancillary charges would be subject to a service tax at the rate of 4.5 per cent. Previously, service provider and receiver who were located outside the taxable territory of India were exempted from this tax,” EEPC India Chairman T S Bhasin said. “The order has created ‘serious problems”, he added.

Besides the additional tax burden, this makes it difficult for the Indian importers to know what the foreign exporters’ ocean freight is. Continue Reading.

Systemic reform will improve ease of doing business: Nirmala Sitharaman 

Seeking private investment, Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today said systemic reforms being pushed by the government may have some short term pain but will make India an easier place to do business. The government is committed to systemic reforms, however painful it is in the short run, she said while hinting at recent demonetisation exercise carried out by the government to eliminate parallel economy.

GAAR from 1 April, to be invoked in fair and rational manner: Tax dept

General anti-avoidance rules (GAAR) was proposed in 2012-13 to check tax evasion and avoidance by foreign investors on their transactions in India. The Income Tax department seeks to address concerns of foreign investors over the implementation of GAAR from 1 April. GAAR seeks to give the tax department powers to scrutinise transactions structured in such a way as to deliberately avoid paying tax in India. After being postponed twice, it is slated to be implemented from financial year 2017-18. Read more on Livemint.

Compiled by Aditi Khutal 


Sensex closes up 174 points to hit 3-month high on optimism over Budget

  • BSE Sensex closed higher by 174 points, or 0.63%, to 27,882, while the Nifty 50 rose 39 points, or 0.45%, to 8,641
  • Market barometer Sensex rallied for the fourth day to end at a 3-month high of 27,882 as February derivatives series got off to a strong start ahead of Budget next week, recording best weekly gains since May last year.
  • Market started the February series on a strong footing led by positive global cues following another record closing in the US. Further, widening of bets on hopes of a series of market and corporate friendly measures from the Budget for 2017-18 to revive an economy hit by the cash ban in November last year helped.

First merged Budget in 92 years: Top rail-linked stocks to watch

  • The Modi government’s rule of doing away with a 92-year-old colonial tradition of presenting a separate Rail Budget and merge it with the Union Budget has taken the sheen off railway-linked stocks, which have been trading rangebound over the past one month.
  • Experts say as far as budgetary allocation is concerned, the importance of the sector will not diminish any bit. In fact, Budget measures could prove to be positive for many railway-linked stocks, experts said.

SEBI sets listing rules for exchanges

  • The Securities and Exchange Board of India announced on Friday new measures for exchanges listing on a rival bourse to resolve any potential conflicts of interest, including closer oversight from an independent panel set up by the regulator.
  • The rules come as BSE Ltd gears up to list on bigger rival National Stock Exchange on Feb. 3, after its up to 12.4 billion rupees ($182.23 million) initial public offering was heavily oversubscribed.
  • Among the new measures, SEBI said exchanges may appeal to an independent panel at the bourse in which they are listed when it feels “aggrieved” by a source of potential conflict.

The exchange can also submit any complaints to an independent panel to be set up by SEBI to provide “independent oversight and review” and to monitor potential conflicts on a regular basis.

  • Concerns over conflicts of interest rose after the National Stock Exchange appealed to SEBI to be allowed to list on its own exchange, saying listing on another bourse would expose it to regulation by a rival.

Compiled by Pooja Shah

Data Analytics

In line with the Modi government’s decision with regard to the demonetization move, the Income Tax department is all set to catch black money hoarders who have managed to get their money cleaned up. The IT dept is calling for bids for Managed Service Provider (MSP) to develop analytical tools for assessing the data of all the people who deposited their money in the banking system & collate it with the vast amount of data it has accumulated over the years into a dashboard format to be used by the Department. Read more.

This article is very useful for learning as top how to use data analytics to improve the practice of Kaizen for a company’s management. The article describes as to how plan with big data whereby rather than relying on traditional theoretical improvement in growth & productivity estimates managers can rely on rely on data to draw up more accuracy duration estimation, better identification and mitigation of risks, and a much more reasonable allocation of resources.How to implement newer programs in a realistic fashion, how to use exploratory data analytics techniques to find out hidden lacunae in their operations & how to improve upon them.

The perils of using data analytics as a sole criterion to measure employee productivity in a company is discussed in this article. Some of the drawbacks include employees fudging their productivity figures , manipulating spreadsheets of employee work output,  lack of empathy for an employee’s personal issues, invasion of privacy in the quest for extraction of social media data,stifling creativity & workplace freedom.

Compiled by Prateek Kumar Mishra