The Hindu Important Articles 06 May 2018
# GST Council approves single form for filing of returns
GST Network to become 100% govt. enterprise; Ministers to study cess on sugar
The Goods and Services Tax Council on Friday decided to convert the GST Network into a 100% government enterprise, and implement a single form for GST filing from the current three.
At its 27th meeting, the Council also decided to create a Group of Ministers to review the plan for imposition of a cess on sugar. The cess was meant to subsidise sugarcane farmers as their production cost is much higher than the selling price.
Returns filing reconciled
The Council has also decided to create another GoM to consider implementation of a 2% incentive for digital transactions. “There has been a discussion over the last several months on one method of return filing that Nandan Nilekani had suggested and another that the officials from the State governments had suggested,” Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said at a press conference after the video-conference meeting. “The Sushil Modi Group of Ministers has found a reconciliation between the two.”
Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia said the Council approved a single, monthly return form that would become applicable in six months. The current system of filing the GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B forms would continue till then. “After six months, there will be a single monthly return for everybody, except composition dealers and those who file returns with zero transactions,” he said. “They can file quarterly returns.” After this, for six more months, businesses will be able to avail provisional credit in the new form, even if their sellers have not uploaded their sales invoices.
“During these six months, the GST Network will continuously feed the dealer data about what is the gap between what he is claiming as provisional credit and what is the actual amount he should be getting based on sellers’ invoices,” he said.
# Rs. 50 lakh seized at check-post on highway
Authorities seized Rs. 50 lakh that was being transported in a KSRTC bus at Manuganahalli check-post on the Mysuru-Hunsur highway, on Friday.
The incident was confirmed by the Hunsur Returning Officer Nithish, who said there were no claimants to the cash seized and an FIR has been registered by the police.
The KSRTC bus was on its way from Mysuru to Udupi and was stopped at the check-post for a routine search by the police and paramiltary forces manning the check-post under the supervision of election officials.
There were about 40 passengers on-board and the team conducting the search stumbled upon a cardboard box tucked below the passenger seat in the last row. The box was hidden behind other luggage. When the authorities asked the passengers to identify and ascertain their luggage, nobody came forward.
Thereafter, it was opened only to discover bundles of notes of Rs. 2,000 and Rs. 500 denominations.
The bus conductor and the driver were questioned as also the passengers but the authorities drew a blank.
It is suspected that the box containing the cash may have been placed in the bus at the originating station — the Mysuru suburban bus stand.
It has transpired that a few passengers had disembarked after the bus left Mysuru before it stopped at the check-post.
The unclaimed cash was seized and Bilikere police have registered a case and are investigating.
# Amit Shah to skip Chamundeshwari during his Mysuru tour today
He will visit Varuna, Periyapatna, Narasimharaja, Krishnaraja, and Chamaraja
BJP national president Amit Shah is scheduled to arrive in Mysuru on Saturday to continue the party’s campaign for the May 12 Assembly elections.
During his daylong programme, Mr. Shah will conduct road shows and address rallies in Varuna, Periyapatna, Narasimharaja, Krishnaraja and Chamaraja segments. But, Chamundeshwari constituency — a segment attracting nationwide attention as it is where Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is contesting — does not figure in his itinerary.
According to the tour programme, Mr. Shah will arrive at Mysuru airport from HAL airport in Bengaluru by helicopter at 10.45 a.m. before participating in a road show at Hadinaru village in Varuna constituency followed by a public meeting in the same village. Mr. Shah will be seeking votes for the party’s candidate in the constituency — Thotada Basavaraju.
After that he is scheduled to depart by helicopter to Periyapatna, where he will participate in a road show to be taken out from the APMC yard there.
After addressing a public meeting and campaigning for the party’s candidate, Manjunath, Mr. Shah will return to Mysuru.
Later in the evening, he will participate in a road show that starts from Shivaji Road and end at Ashoka Road in Narasimharaja Assembly constituency to seek votes for BJP candidate S. Satish, also known as Sandesh Swamy.
Mr. Shah is also scheduled to hold road shows from Ashoka Road to Kote Anjaneya Swamy temple seeking votes for its candidate from Chamaraja constituency, L. Nagendra.
Before winding up for the day, Mr. Shah will also hold a road show at Shantala Talkies seeking votes for BJP candidate from Krishnaraja constituency, S.A. Ramdas.
In Chamundeshwari, Mr. Siddaramaiah is engaged in a fierce electoral battle with his lieutenant-turned-political rival G.T. Deve Gowda of the JD(S). The BJP has fielded Gopal Rao here.
Already, Congress leaders have accused the BJP of having a “tacit” understanding with the JD(S) and has fielded a “weak” candidate in Chamundeshwari. Now, by skipping Chamundeshwari, the BJP has further fuelled suspicion of having an “understanding” with the JD(S), said Congress leaders.
But, BJP workers in Chamundeshwari are clearly upset with Mr. Shah for overlooking the constituency. “We understand the party appears to be focussing more on Varuna than Chamundeshwari. But, we will also approach the party’s district committee to facilitate a visit by Mr. Shah to this constituency soon,” said Ravi, secretary of BJP’s Chamundeshwari Assembly segment unit.
# Court declines to stay govt order on nurses’ wages
Interim order after comprehensive hearing on petition
The Kerala High Court on Friday declined to stay the government order fixing the minimum wages of nurses working in private hospitals at Rs. 20,000.
When the petition filed by the Kerala Private Hospitals Association came up for hearing, the counsel for the association sought to stay the order. However, the court said that an interim order could be passed only after having a comprehensive hearing on the petition.
In the petition, secretary of the association Hussain Koya Thangal and others said the notification had certain procedural illegalities. According to the petitioners, the mode of fixation of minimum wages under Section 5 of the Travancore Cochin Literary Scientific and Charitable Societies Act had not been followed.
Besides, the categorisation of private hospitals based on bed strength was illegal. As per the order, the revision of minimum wages was being implemented with retrospective effect from September 1, 2017. This was against the various principles laid down by judgments of the High Court and the Supreme Court.
The petitioners pointed out that the charter of demands of the unions should have been dealt with under the provisions of the Industrial Disputes Act. As per the provisions of the Act, when a demand for revision of wages was raised, the proper course for the government was to refer the disputes for conciliation.
If conciliation failed, a report should be forwarded and the matter should be referred to a court or tribunal. Therefore, the fixation of minimum wages should be based on the established principles of law and in accordance with the scheme of the enactment and any deviation would be illegal.
As per the order, the minimum pay for nurses working in private hospitals with a bed strength up to 100 would be Rs. 20,000. If it was implemented, it would affect several hospitals, the petitioners said.
The petitioners pointed out that there was bar on issuing a fresh notification as the writ petition questioning the revision of wages implemented in 2009 was still pending before the High Court. In fact, all coercive steps against the members of the association was stayed by the court then.
# CM visit today
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu will visit Guntur to console the family of the girl who was allegedly raped at Dachepalli, on Saturday.
Mr. Naidu on Friday said that the government would act firmly to prevent such incidents. The Dachepalli one should be the last in the State. The government would take stringent measures against rapists. The entire State was under drone and CC camera surveillance. It was unfortunate that the YSR Congress Party was using the incident for political mileage, he said.
# PM in city today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address an election rally of the BJP at Nehru Maidan here on Saturday evening.
The police have made elaborate security arrangements in view of his visit.
Police Commissioner Vipul Kumar has banned parking of vehicles on the roadside from the international airport at Kenjar till Nehru Maidan via Kavoor, KPT, Kadri, Bunts Hostel, Balmatta from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Parking of vehicles within a 500-m radius of Nehru Maidan has also been banned during the period.
According to sources, Mr. Modi would arrive by helicopter from Shivamogga at 6.10 p.m.
He would attend the rally at Nehru Maidan from 6.30 p.m. to 7.15 p.m. He would leave the city by flight to Bengaluru later.
This would be the first public address of Mr. Modi in Mangaluru after becoming the Prime Minister.
# ‘Wake-up call’ to Bengal poll panel
The Calcutta High Court on Friday refused to interfere with the schedule of rural polls in West Bengal, but came down heavily on the State Election Commission (SEC) pointing out several irregularities in the notifications issued by the constitutional body for holding panachayat elections on May 14.