The bills for the proposed direct and indirect tax proposals—Direct Taxes Code (DTC) and Goods and Services Tax (GST)—will be tabled in the Monsoon session of Parliament beginning next week.
“It is our expectation that both the constitutional amendment bill and DTC Bill would be introduced in the Monsoon session,” revenue secretary Sunil Mitra said at a CII seminar on Tuesday.
The Bill for DTC and another for constitutional amendment required for introducing GST in the country are two very significant moves in improving the taxation structure in the country.
While DTC will replace the archaic Income Tax Act in the country to move to a tax structure that is simple and has lesser exemption, GST will integrate the indirect tax levies at the Centre and the states level with one common tax for all goods and services in the country. The government aims to introduce the tax reforms from April 2011.
Mitra’s assurance for the introduction of the two bills came a day before the Empowered Committee of State Finance Ministers are meeting here to discuss GST issues. Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee is also scheduled to meet state finance ministers on Tuesday.
“On GST, we have a meeting of empowered committee on Wednesday. The basic thrust is the I-T system. Nandan Nilekani (the UIDAI chairman) will make a presentation. And we need key decision on a common portal on PAN-based registration,” Mitra said.
Commenting on the DTC he said that changes in the DTC Bill from what was proposed in the first draft is possible until it goes to Parliament. “Until the DTC goes in the form of legislation in Parliament there is always scope to consider issues,” Mitra said.
While the finance ministry has come out with a revised draft of DTC and addressed the issues related to minimum alternate tax, taxing of long-term savings like provident funds in it, there are some issues which still need a re-look.