‘About 75% of Targeted 60,000 Officers Trained For GST’

After Notes Ban, PM Narendra Modi Promises Law Against Benami Property Soon

A Study Report; By Harbans S Nagokay.

Jammu: 12/25/2016.

Though! Restrictions on withdrawal of cash from banks and ATMs are likely to continue beyond December 30thas currency printing presses and RBI have not been able to keep pace with the demand of new currency notes. Even after the 50-day deadline for completion of demonetization process,Banks at many places are not in a position to disburse even the current limit of Rs. 24,000 per week due to cash crunch and are rationing the valid currency depending on cash availability.

On other side; vowing to carry forward the war against corruption and black money post-demonetization, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said the government will soon operationalize a strong law to effectively deal with ‘benami’ properties and this was just the beginning.Making his last monthly address this year in his “Mann kiBaat” programme, he defended the frequent changes in the rules of demonetization, saying these have been done to reduce the people’s problems and defeat such forces who are out to thwart his government’s fight against black money and corruption.PM Modi sought the cooperation of public in making the “war on corruption” a success and said the wrongdoings of some are being caught only with the support of common people who are coming forward with concrete information about hoarders.

PM also said that some people who are spreading rumors that political parties enjoy all concessions and exemptions “are wrong and all are equal before law” and they have to abide by it.”It was my earnest wish that the ongoing campaign against corruption and black money, including the realm of political parties and political funding, be discussed extensively in the Parliament. Had the House functioned properly, there would have been comprehensive deliberation. Then, giving a push to his plea for cashless economy, PM Modi also launched two new schemes for traders and customers that will dole out 15,000 prizes every day to those making digital transactions.

 Yet! According to reliable sources, the government intends to roll out the GST regime from April, but there are apprehensions that the date would be missed because the all-powerful GST Council is yet to iron out several vexed issues, including jurisdiction of Centre and state governments over taxpayers.Uncertainty over the rollout date of GST or Goods and Services Tax notwithstanding, the National Academy of Customs, Excise and Narcotics (NACEN) has already trained about three-fourth of the targeted 60,000 field officials who would be instrumental in implementing the new indirect tax regime.The Academy has been tasked with the mammoth training target of 60,000 officials of both the Centre and states.As per the latest NACEN data (up to December 17), 44,259 field officers have been trained.The Council, headed by Union Finance Minister ArunJaitley and comprising state finance ministers, has so far met seven times after Parliament amended the Constitution for implementation of GST.

 By all said and done, it is however said that the pace of revival of economic activity in the fourth quarter of the current financial year is likely to take a cue from how quickly currency in circulation gets replenished and digital transactions become more widespread.

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