GST collection dips 3.6% in Aug on delayed filing

Goods and services tax (GST) collections dipped 3.6% in August from the previous month as delayed filing on account of technical glitches took a toll on the overall collection. Going by the experience in July , the kitty is expected to swell as more taxpayers pay even though the due date is over.

Latest data released by the finance ministry on Tuesday showed that in August, the government managed to rake in Rs 90,669 crore, marginally lower than the revised mop-up of Rs 94,063 crore in July . Initial estimates released on August 29 had estimated the July collections at Rs 92,283 crore. The final returns for August (GSTR 3B) had to be filed by September 20.

The data revealed that there were segments where collections had soared, such as through compensation cess, which is levied on tobacco products, pan masala and automobiles. There was a pickup in demand for large cars, especially SUVs, as the government had planned to increase the cess on these vehicles. Till Monday , 37.63 lakh of the 68.2 lakh entities registered for GST had filed their returns. “The above figures obviously do not include GST to be paid by 10.24 lakh assessees, who have opted for the composition scheme. Additionally , there are still a number of assessees who have not filed their return either for July or August, 2017. The increase in the above stated figures will be informed in due course,“ the government said in a statement.

Businesses have been complaining about difficulty in filing and submitting returns through the GST Network (GSTN) tax portal with many consultants complaining of regular outages and have blamed the lack of adequate capacity on the IT backbone supporting the new tax regime. The accusation has, however, been trashed by GSTN.

“It is too early to hazard a guess on the overall GST collections as many taxpayers have still not paid GST; there is inconsistency in collections because of transitional credit and exporters not being able to claim refund of GST. Things will settle down only in the next few months wherein a clearer picture on GST revenues would emerge,“ said Abhishek Jain, tax partner at consulting firm EY India.

Courtesy by TIMES OF INDIA

 

 

 

 

 

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Log on to Kaveri, register, download property papers

Bengaluru: The process of buying and renting property in Karnataka just got a lot simpler. Citizens who wish to buy or rent property will no longer have to visit a sub-registrar’s office to register properties and get certified hard copies of the registered documents.

The stamps and registration department has launched Kaveri online facility (http:kaverionline.karnataka.gov.in) that allows online registration of properties and also free downloading of property registration documents, including certified sale deeds and encumbrance certificates.

“We have successfully tested this service at our Gandhinagar (Bengaluru) sub-registrar office, and soon it will be available across sub-registrar offices in Karnataka. Once launched, people can get property documents from anywhere,“ said Inspector-General of Registration and Commissioner of Stamps Manoj Kumar Meena.

With introduction of the service, citizens no longer have to depend on real estate agents or make multiple trips to subregistrar offices to procure certified hard copies of property transactions. It also reduces the possibility of cheating by opening up the transaction history of a property .

Officials said that the time required to download a document from the website will be less than 30 minutes, and will be paid service. This, however, is a big improvement on the current state of affairs, where procuring hard copies of a certified document can often take several days.

The office of property registration plays a crucial role as it authenticates sale or transfer of immovable property . Its registration helps fix ownership or right on a property . The department, roughly , receives at least 15-20 lakh queries, seeking copies of documents from sub-registrar offices every year across Karnataka.

Officials said the service will be added with an `esearch’ facility that facilitates the process of selecting real estate. A citizen interested in purchasing a property , for instance, on MG Road but would first like to conduct a thorough search of records, now only needs to know its city survey number and subregistrar office concerned.

It also provides detailed search results of registered transactions of properties since 2003, and is, therefore, expected to check fraudulent transactions to an extent.

Meena said the facility will make the registration process more citizen-friendly, and will drastically reduce footfall at sub-registrar offices, and increase their work efficiency . Roughly , 30% of the people visiting sub-registrar offices come for certified copies of registered documents.

Prakash R, a property consultant and RTI activist, welcomed the initiative, but cautioned that its effectiveness will be known only after extended use. “It can bring down corruption, considering that sub-registrar offices in Karnataka have been a hub of sleaze and bribery . But officials themselves may not allow technology to function smoothly , if its harms their interest,“ he said.

Courtesy by TIMES OF INDIA

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FIRST IN BENGALURU – Church Street being covered with cobblestones, may be ready by Dec

Bengaluru: For the first time in Bengaluru, granite cobblestones are being used to pave a road. The technique is being employed to revamp Church Street, which will wear a new look in a couple of months.The laying of cobblestones -the project is expected to cost Rs 8 crore and will cover the entire street from the Brigade Road junction to St Marks Road -has already begun. A part of the road will be ready soon.However, no vehicles will be allowed on the stretch till December-end, which is when the work is expected to be over, BBMP officials said.

KT Nagaraj, chief engineer of projects, BBMP, said that the first phase of the project, the 440-metre stretch from Brigade Road to Vasudev Adiga’s, will be completed by November 15. “This is highly skilled labour, which is common in European countries. Each stone has to be fixed individually in concrete, which will take 15 days to be ready. The road will be able to withstand vehicular movement but traffic will only be permitted when the entire work is complete,“ he said.

“We have taken up several stretches of roads under the TenderSURE project. Some of them ike Cunningham Road, Residency Road and Richmond Road are blacktopped but Nrupathanga Road is whitetopped.This (Church Street) too is a type of TenderSURE road,“ he explained. The BBMP has missed multiple deadlines since the TenderSure work started on February 22, despite ministers and officials taking work ers to task. In May, Bengaluru development minister KJ George had pulled up officials, directing them to expedite the work.

Courtesy By TIMES OF INDIA

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BIAL running HAL Airport is among options on table

Bengaloreuru :  Close to a decade after its closure, talks on the reopening of HAL Airport have been revived. And if all goes well, the airport will be thrown open for commercial operations of domestic flights soon.Industries minister RV Deshpande told TOI that the talks with the stakeholders were in an advanced stage and he hoped for a positive outcome.Both the state and the Centre are involved in the talks.

Among the options is an offer by the Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL), which owns and operates the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA), to operate the HAL Airport.

“We are exploring all possible options. BIAL has asked us to allow them to operate this airport too. We will have to look into the proposal,“ said Deshpande.

The state government is also trying to get the Bidar Airport operational. Both the HAL and Bidar airports have been affected by contractual obligations with the promoters of KIA in Bengaluru and Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA) in Hyderabad, respectively . BIAL is owned by several entities, with the biggest stake held by Fairfax, while GMR Group operates the Hyderabad international airport.

As per the agreement with these international airports, no commercial airport can operate within 150 km radius of these airports.

The HAL Airport was closed for scheduled flights in 2008 after KIA was commissioned and the Begumpet Airport in Hyderabad was closed after RGIA was launched in the same year. Both HAL and Begumpet airports are now being used for non-scheduled flights and chartered aircrafts.

The Bidar airport too is within 150 km of RGIA.

“The talks have been on for quite some time now, but it gained traction after the governments of Karnataka and Telangana took the initiative and the minister of civil aviation became proactive,“ said a highly placed source in the civil aviation ministry .

The source said the negotiations are happening in the backdrop of the Supreme Court holding that the Centre and states could renegotiate terms with regard to the reopening of the defunct airports.

The Karnataka High Court, in 2010, had directed the government to renegotiate the HAL Airport issue with the BIAL. Subsequently , solicitor general Gopala Subramaniam gave an undertaking to the apex court that the Centre will renegotiate with BIAL too.

“We have spoken to the CEOs of both BIAL and GMR Group, and the process is on. I wrote to the CEO of GMR Group and he in turn has written to the ministry of civil aviation,“ said Deshpande.

Ashok Gajapathi Raju, minister for civil aviation, sought to play his cards close to his chest. “I can’t talk right now on this,“ he said.

BIAL authorities said in response to a query: “We have no inputs on this matter at this point.“ A GMR spokesperson (for the Hyderabad airport) said on email: “We would not like to comment on this.“

Conflicting opinions are also said to be dogging the negotiations. “Contrary to the general perception that the HAL Airport is suitable for commercial operations, it is ideally suited for maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) of flights. The state government has to expedite its efforts to get an MRO facility at the HAL Airport,“ said Union minister H N Ananth Kumar. It was under Kumar’s earlier tenure as civil aviation minister that the proposal to construct KIA was cleared.

Courtesy by TIMES OF INDIA

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Karnataka RERA gets 80 plaints in 62 days

BENGALURU: Ever since the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) came into force in Karnataka, it has been getting complaints from homebuyers against builders almost every day.

“About 80 complaints have been registered against developers across the state in the past 62 days. A majority of these complaints are against realty projects in Bengaluru,” said Karnataka RERA chairman and housing secretary Kapil Mohan. he most common comT plaints are on delayed delivery of apartmentshouses or failure to provide promised amenities, Mohan said.

Karnataka notified the RERA Act on July 10 and launched a portal on July 24 for builders and agents to register themselves and their projects. A complaint window was also unveiled on its website to enable homebuyers to file complaints against builders.

According to the Act, a builder who fails to act even after a complaint is filed with RERA by a homebuyer, is liable to pay a penalty of 10% of the estimated cost of the real estate project. On continued violation, the builder can be punished with imprisonment up to three years.

Once the complaint details of projects are registered, officials said the Authority will take up a suo motu case and send notices to builders. “We will not straightaway levy a penalty on builders following complaints from buyers and citizens. The affected parties will be given a hearing and addressing their problems will be our aim. We want homebuyers to get justice early rather than getting them embroiled in a legal tangle, as it happens in courts,” Mohan said

However, some feel that RERA is not working as effectively as it should. They say it is necessary to have a permanent chairman and two members. The principal secretary of the housing department is currently the in terim chairman, but sources said he was too busy with his main charge of redressing homebuyer complaints. “The whole idea behind RERA and real estate rules was to look into grievances of homebuyers. A tribunal under RERA is meant to assist in resolving disputes. If that doesn’t function properly , the whole purpose of having RERA gets defeated,” said G Prasad, a homebuyer who has complained against a reputed builder with RERA.
Courtesy by Times of India

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