Union Govt. Forms 4 Panels to Analyze EPFO Functioning

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The Union Government of India, has taken the decision to create 4 specific board-level committees to analyze and delve into the functioning of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO). Each of the 4 new committees will take a peep under the hood of how different aspects of the EPFO function which are – establishment related issues, futuristic implementation of social security, digital capacity building & pension related issues. The new committees or sub-committees will look into the aforementioned aspects of EPFO functioning.

The formation of these panels was approved by the chair of the Central Board of Trustees of EPFO Bhupinder Yadav who is also the Union Minister of Labour & Employment. The newly approved committees have been notified on 27th November and they have a tenure of 3 months. Currently, the EPFO handles a fund of more than ₹15 lakh crores of retirement savings.

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The 2 committees which will be inspecting the functions of the EPFO with regard to ‘Pension Related Issues/Reforms and ‘IT & Communication’ will be led by Labour Secretary Sunil Barthwal, who was in charge of the EPFO as Central PF Commissioner until late September of this year. An 8-member panel has been instructed to submit a report for suggestions on matters pertaining to pension reforms for universalization of social security. There already exists a board-level committee to review, modify & better the Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) of 1995.

The EPS & EDLI (Employees’ Deposit Linked Insurance) Implementation Committees are usually headed by the CPFC. Meanwhile, the committee appointed to look into IT & Communications to build the digital capacity of EPFO comprises of 10-members and it has been asked to provide solutions to improve service delivery for EPFO members. The committee assigned to look into building digital capacity of the EPFO is also tasked with finding solutions for effective media & communication with stakeholders.

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The 2 other committees will be headed by Rameshwar Teli who is the Minister of State for Labour & Employment. The committees will be dealing with the workings of the establishment aspects, internal human resources and ways to improve EPFO coverage, decreasing related litigation issues. There will be a keen interest in the proceedings of the inspection of the human resources committee as there were hurried transfers & appointments for more than 100 senior EPFO officials in July this year.

 Today Last Date of EPFO Deadline to Link UAN to Aadhaar Numbers

The EPFO had originally postponed the deadline for members to link their Aadhaar card nos. to their UAN (Universal Account Number) from 31st August 2021 to 30th November 2021. The move to link Aadhaar number with the UAN was made necessary this year after a revision to section 142 of the Code of Social Security 2020.

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“In partial modification of the Circular No. WSU/15(1)2019/ATR/529 dated 15.06.2021 under reference, it is informed that the date of completing the seeding and verification of Aadhaar with UAN, is hereby extended till 30.11.2021 and accordingly, the date in Para 1 of the referred Circular dated 15.06.2021 mentioned as 01.09.2021 may be read as 01.12.2021,” stated in a statement made public by the EPFO on 15th November 2021.

The consequences of not linking UAN with Aadhaar number are many but the primary one would be the member will not receive employer’s contribution. The requirements for filing Electronic Challan Cumulative Return have also been modified by EPFO, saying the company can only file for employees who have linked UAN to Aadhaar number. Employers can apply for a separate ECR for non-Aadhaar seeded UAN once the Aadhaar seeding procedure is finished. Most employees will face payment delays in their account till the data is approved by employers & authorities and will also be incapable of withdrawing PF funds from their accounts.

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The EPFO is also proposing to open membership to previous members who have exited the scheme with a minimum contribution of ₹500 per month which could benefit citizens who have just lost their job or moved jobs from formal sector to a job in the informal sector voluntarily. The EPFO is currently working on a system to allow previous members of the EPFO re-join by paying a monthly contribution of ₹500 or 12% of their monthly income.

The EPFO is analysing the effect this new scheme could have on the EPS, EPF & EDLI schemes, post which the above scheme will be finalised. The Social Security Code 2020 allows the EPFO to add new schemes to its offerings. The introduction of this new scheme could greatly benefit individuals have a retirement corpus fund, avail fixed returns at higher interest rates while also leading to growth of the EPFO fund and number of EPFO members.

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EPFO Begins Crediting Interest to PF Accounts, 4 Ways to Check PF Account Balance

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The Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) has begun crediting the interest garnered on its fund investments for this year. After the 229th meeting of the Central Board of Trustees on 20th November where a lot of major decisions were made. The interest rate on the PF account investments was maintained the same as it was at 8.5% for the financial year 2020-2021.

The EPFO began crediting the accounts of the PF account holders after the board meeting. The EPFO has to credit the interest for more than 25 crore accounts of EPFO members. EPFO members can check their PF account balance easily and in 4 easy ways. The 4 methods to check PF account balance are mentioned below:

Missed Call – PF account holders or members of the EPF can check their account balance by just giving a missed call at 011-22901406 from their registered mobile number linked to their UAN (Universal Account Number).

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  1. Via SMS – EPFO members can check their account balance via SMS too – they only need to text an SMS from their registered mobile number linked to their UAN in the format given below
  2. Text EPFOHO <UAN> <LAN> to 7738299899
  3. UAN is the member’s Universal Account Number and LAN is the first 3 letters of choice of language – ENG for English, HIN for Hindi etc.
  4. The balance message will be available in 9 languages – English, Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Gujarati, Marathi, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada and Punjabi.
  • Umang App – EPFO members can also view their PF account number via the Umang app. Members just need to install the Umang app from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store and then login using their UAN & OTP sent to their registered mobile number, after logging-in, members can directly view their PF account balance.
  • Through EPFO website

EPFO members can check their balance via the EPFO website too

  • Head to the official EPFO website at epfindia.gov.in
  • Select the ‘Services’ tab and click on the ‘For Employees’ link
  • Members must sign-in using their UAN & OTP (One-Time Password)
  • After signing-in they can view their account balance in the ‘Member’s Passbook’ section if the UAN has been activated by the employer.
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CBI Nabs EPFO Enforcement Officer in Bribery Case

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An Enforcement Officer of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) earlier this week after an investigation of a bribery case. The prime suspects of the investigation were accused of opening a false examination of a firm’s employees provident fund payments. The arrested Enforcement Officer of EPFO was posted at Jagadhari in Haryana and was facing an allegation of asking/accepting ₹1 lakh as bribe in a suit filed by a private individual.

According to EPFO officials, the Central Bureau of Investigation – the central body which is assigned for investigation into cases of corruption across India – discovered that the person who accepted the bribe of ₹1 lakh was identified as Ashok Gupta – who accepted the bribe amount from the petitioner while following orders of EPFO Enforcement Officer Anil Kumar. Enforcement Officer Anil Kumar was later apprehended when the CBI conducted searches at the premises of the prime suspects in the case.

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The CBI had laid a trap to nab the identified suspects and Ashok Gupta was apprehended during the operation who led to EPFO Enforcement Officer Anil Kumar. Both prime suspects, arrested, were to be produced before the court of justice to undergo trial this week. The suspects – the EPFO Enforcement Officer & his aide were booked by the CBI on the basis of a complaint filed by a private individual claiming the EPFO at Jagadhari had started an inquiry against the complainant’s firm under the Civil Procedure Code long after all dues for the EPF amount for the period from November 2018 to July 2019 were deposited.

During the investigation, the EPFO had asked the complainant to contact another person for acquiring clearance in the enquiry and thus the complainant came across Ashok Gupta, who, allegedly demanded a bribe of ₹1 lakh on behalf of the Enforcement Officer of the EPFO to settle the enquiry.

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Latest EPFO Decision – No Need for Account Transfer in case of Job Change

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The Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) will now not require Pension Fund (PF) account holders (employees) to transfer their PF account from their previous employer to their new employer thanks to a decision by the EPFO to give the green signal for development of centralized IT-enabled systems by C-DAC (Centre for Development of Advanced Computing). An employee’s PF account number can remain the same even if they change jobs after this major decision by the EPFO.

The new functionalities will be shifted to a central database in phases to ensure smoother roll-out, improved operations and easy service delivery. As part of the new system, all the existing accounts of a PF member will be merged into one and also prevent duplication of accounts. This key decision was taken during the 229th meeting of the EPFO Central Board of Trustee held on 20th November 2021, headed by Minister for Labour and Employment Bhupender Yadav. As per the existing rules, an employee who is a member of the PF must complete paperwork & application at both their previous and new employers for transfer of PF account, as this is a tedious process, a lot of the members of PF just open a new PF account with their new employer.

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While the UAN of the account will be the same, the new account with the new employer will not display the previous existing balance in the account with the old employer – these are the 2 main things which will be changed as the EPFO approved a centralized database development and allowing members to use their existing account with a new employer after change of job.

In another decision, the EPFO has now empowered the Finance Investment and Audit Committee (FIAC) – which is the advisory body of the EPFO for investments and strategies, to make decision on the investment options for investments to be made in all asset classes recognized as investments by the Government of India. The EPFO has also decided to form 4 new sub-committees for establishment related matters + futuristic implementation of social security code and digital capacity building + pension related issues.

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These new sub-committees will be comprised of EPFO board members from the employers’ and employees’ sides as well as government representatives. The sub-committees for establishment related issues & futuristic implementation of social security code will be headed by the Minister of State for Labour & Employment. The other 2 sub-committees for digital capacity building and pension related issues will be headed by the Union Labour & Employment Secretary.

EPFO Adds Net 15 lakh New Subscribers in September 2021

As the number of jobs being created in India is on a steady climb, growth in the economic activity heading towards pre-Covid levels, the EPFO added more than 13 lakh net subscribers to the PF in the month of September 2021 which is about 3% more than September 2020 and a growth of more than 1 lakh subscribers compared to August 2021 according to the provisional payroll data. Of the 15+ lakh new subscribers added in September, approximately 8.9 lakh members were new members registered for the first time.

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More than 6 lakh members left & re-joined the EPFO by changing jobs. The age group of 18-25 years had the highest number of net enrolments with about 7 lakh net enrolments. This indicates that many first-time job seekers are joining the organised sector workforce in large numbers and have contributed around 47.39 % of total net subscriber additions in September 2021. The states of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat & Haryana registered a net 9+ lakh net subscribers accounting for 61% of the net payroll addition. The payroll data will always be provisional as the numbers change on a daily basis due to new additions & closing of PF accounts.

At present, the EPFO as a retirement fund management organization has more than 6 crore members with a total fund of more than ₹12 lakh crores.

₹1.23 Lakh Crore Equity Investment from EPFO Returns 14.6% Interest

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The Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) benefitted from a stock market surge to obtain an annualized 14.6% return on equity investments of ₹1.23 lakh crores (₹1.23 trillion). Meanwhile, Bharat 22 ETFs (Exchange Traded Fund) returned only about 2% for EPFO and EPFO’s investment in CPSE ETF returned negative results.

Over 6 crore earning individuals who are members of the EPFO and contribute to the government’s retirement funds management system      will be pleased with the high annualized return generated by the EPFO’s cumulative investments even if it was let-down by its investments in Bharat 22 and Central Public Sector Enterprise (CPSE) ETFs. The Bharat 22 ETF was launched to meet the govt.’s aim of divestment from public sector companies, while the CPSE ETF reflects the performance of few chosen CPSEs.

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The EPFO makes investments in the stock market solely through ETFs and EPF investments in SBI & UTI Mutual Funds have provided higher returns compared to Bharat 22 & CPSE ETFs. CPSE ETF returned a negative interest of -1.7% for the financial year 2021. The general notion from experts in the investment field suggests that better equity yield will benefit the EPFO’s interest paying capacity but that could be negated by the exposure to some ETFs which needs to be addressed as it creates losses on savings of crores of employees.

At the end of the financial year on 31st March 2021, the SBI Mutual Fund invested EPFO corpus has afforded a return of 15.76%. and the corpus managed by UTI Mutual Funds returned an even better 16.37% interest according to the EPFO. While the Bharat 22 & CPSE ETFs were designed to meet the government’s goals of divestment, they have proved to be bad investments for the EPFO. By the end of the financial year 2021, EPFO had net investments of ₹1,22,986.4 crore (almost Rs 1.23 lakh crore); the notional value of the investments was pegged at ₹1.6 lakh crores, effectively giving it a 14.67 percent annualised return. More details will be out in the public when presented to the EPFO Central Board during their next meeting on 20th November.

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Overall, to confirm the net positive returns of EPFO’s equity investments, the key indicator is the rise of the stock market since the beginning of the financial year. The S&P BSE Sensex has risen from 49,509.15 at the end of FY2021 to 60,322.37 at close on 16th November 2021.

EPFO & LIC To Invest In Start-ups

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The Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) & Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) have decided to invest strategically in upcoming start-ups. The aim is to fund more start-ups, as the number of funded start-ups increases, the chances of successful start-ups increase and hence the EPFO & LIC can provide higher returns for their members who have entrusted their savings to these 2 organizations.

The idea was welcomed by financial experts & members alike because as it stands, only about 10% of the 1.1 lakh+ start-ups in India currently have adequate funding. India ranks 3rd worldwide in the number of unicorn start-ups after USA & China. Unicorns are start-ups that are now worth more than $1 billion. The idea is if more start-ups are guaranteed funding, there will be more unicorns & successful start-ups resulting in better returns and thus higher interest rates on EPF & LIC savings. While the success ratio of start-ups is pretty low, even the few successful start-ups can make up for the losses & return profits from the investments made by EPFO & LIC.

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EPFO & LIC have a combined total of more than Rs. 51 crores in assets under management. If even a small part of these assets is invested as venture capital, the results would be higher returns & a much required push to Indian enterprises. Asset diversification to optimize the risk-reward trade-off is sound strategy. There is some caution to be taken in this process, given that venture fund investment is risky and startups carry a high probability of failure. Experienced venture funds & capitalists with a good track record of investment can ensure the funds are invested & pulled-out at the right time along with smart selection of start-ups to invest in.

The investment platform will be set up by Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), a bank that has been nurturing a start-up fund since 1999. The idea is to set up a technology platform through which there can be match-making and the field can be expanded. SIDBI has invested in companies like BillDesk which went on to become a unicorn. Successful IPOs of start-ups like Zomato will also encourage more investment at the start-up level and regular working-class citizens can also enjoy a fair share of profit from success of start-ups. Currently, India has only about 6 – 7 thousand angel investors compared to lakhs of angel investors in China & India. This investment plan from EPFO & LIC will help start-ups achieve early stage funding,

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14.65 lakh New EPFO Subscribers in July

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The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) scheme was introduced as the primary scheme under the Employees’ Provident Funds & Miscellaneous Provisions Act implemented in 1952. The EPF scheme functions & is managed by the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO). As per the EPF scheme, the employee has to pay a certain contribution/share towards EPF scheme and the same share will be matched by the employer. The employee will receive the amount which is the sum of both their & their employer’s contribution with interest on both when they retire or in case of emergency situations.

As India begun recovery in June from the 2021 Covid-19 lockdown months April & May, a sharp rise in the number of job opportunities and more hiring was witnessed. Companies trying to stabilize their business began hiring in large numbers to cater to the demand for services during the festival months from September to December (Ganesh Chaturthi to Christmas/New Year). Many industries, factories, establishments, start-ups started hiring in large numbers since the month of July. Work opportunities increased across all sectors to match the workload they would face over the festival periods & to meet year-end targets

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Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) data indicated a net 14.65 lakh+ new members were added to the payroll. Comparatively, in the month of June, approximately 11 lakh+ new subscribers were added to the EPF records. The rate of new employment for the month of July was nearly 32% more than the rate of new employment for the month of June. The payroll data of EPFO also displayed that around 9 lakh+ members of EPFO exited & rejoined the EPFO due to change of jobs/employer. Out of the 14.65 lakh+ new members of the EPFO, nearly 9 lakh members were new EPFO members.

The states that registered highest hiring numbers were Maharashtra, Haryana, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu & Karnataka. These 5 states hired roughly 9 lakh+ new EPFO members. Noticeably, majority of the EPFO subscribers chose to continue their membership by transferring PF accumulation balance from previous employer to the current PF account instead of going for final withdrawal. The top states in hiring new employees mentioned above accounted for 63% of the total payroll addition across all age categories.

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The percentage of new women employees registered under the EPFO was more than 20% according to the data from EPFO. The number of new female employees added to payroll surged past the 3-lakh mark during July 2021, this is a 70% increase compared to the number of new women employees added in June 2021 – 2.1 lakhs. Observably, this means fewer female employees exited employment & more joined during the month of July. Professional expert services categories (private security, small specialist contractors, small industries etc.) had around 42% share in new employees’ addition in this period. Majority of new subscriber additions to the EPFO were part of the 18-25 years old age category, more than 7 lakhs in number – this makes up almost 50% of the total new employee addition to the EPFO for this period.

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New Financial year begins with new changes on income tax rules.

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  • The new financial year began on April 1, 2021 with new changes on the income tax rules.
  • These changes were announced by the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during the 2021 Union Budget itself upon a decision to get it effected from the first of April, 2021, Thursday.
  • The interest earned on employee’s contribution above ₹2.5 lakh in a year will be taxable from this month.
  • Buying a pension cover will become easier.
  • From changes airfare to standard insurance policies, all the various norms will get into the effect from the given date.
  • Further, in case there is no contribution by the employer to the EPF account (usually in case of government employees), then interest will be tax-exempt for the deposits up to Rs 5 lakh in a financial year.Thus, in the new financial year to avoid tax on the PF interest, ensure that the deposits in your EPF account do not exceed the specified limits mentioned above.
  • Check down below 8 important norms that will be effected measurably upon the release of the new income tax guidelines.
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8 new important ITR rules are as follows:

  • Price per LPG cylinder willbe reduced by Rs. 10/-
  • The price for domestic cooking gas (LPG) is enabled to get decreased by 10 Indian Rupees per cylinder from the given date onwards.
  • Some of the well-known Petroleum corporations such as Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation have already taken action regarding the reduction and followed the rules presented by the government.
  • In Delhi and Mumbai, a 14.2 kg non-subsidized LPG cylinder will now cost around 809 INR that was previously 819 INR.
  • Similarly, the present cost availability in Kolkata shall be 835.50 INR whereas in Chennai, it will be 825 INR.
  • Prices for air ticketswill get costlier
  • Starting from this month, air travel will become costlier.
  • The Aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has hiked air security fee (ASF).
  • While the rise in ASF for domestic passengers is of ₹40, for international passengers, the rise is of ₹114.38.
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  • No advance tax penalty on dividend income
  • If there is a shortfall in advance tax instalment or failure to pay the same on time due to dividend income, then no penal interest shall be charged under section 234C of the Income-tax Act subject to certain conditions.
  • This rule comes as a relief for tax payersas the dividends become taxable in the hands of individual from April 1, 2020.
  • Option to choose ‘New tax regime’ instead of Old tax regime
  • The government had implemented the new tax regime last year in Budget 2020.
  • The exercise of choosing one of the tax regimes for FY 2020-21 will be required to be made starting from 1st of April 2021.
  • Taxpayers still have time until 31st March 2021 to make tax-saving deductions, however, they will be able to opt for a beneficial regime at the time of filing their tax returns for FY 2020-21.
  • Saral Pension policy
  • On special order from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), all life insurance companies have to mandatorily offer a standard individual immediate annuity product from April popularly known as the Saral Pension Policy.
  • This plan will provide a minimum annuity of ₹1,000 per month, ₹3,000 per quarter, ₹6,000 per half year, and ₹1,2000 per annum.
  • The minimum age limit for purchasing this plan is 40 years and the maximum is 80 years.
  • This will be a single premium, non-linked non-participating immediate annuity plan.
  • Standard personal accident insurance policy
  • A standard personal accident insurance product called Saral Suraksha Bima will offer a minimum sum insured of ₹2.5 lakh.
  • It has already been commenced from 1 April.
  • Under this policy, the maximum sum insured will be ₹1 crore.
  • Sum insured offered should be in multiples of ₹50,000,offering on their own beyond the mentioned range.
  • Anyone over 18 years old can buy this policy. The maximum age at entry is set at 70.
  • Senior citizens above 75 years exempted from filing ITR
  • Senior citizens above the age of 75 years, who only have pension and interest as a source of income will be exempted from filing ITR, starting from 1 April, where the interest income is earned in the same bank where pension is deposited.
  • The exemption will be available to only those senior citizens who have no other income but depend on pension and interest income from the bank hosting the pension account.
  • Tax benefits on Unit-Linked Insurance Products (ULIP)
  • The maturity gains in Unit Linked Investment Plan (ULIPs) would be taxed only if the annual premiums are equal to or above ₹2.5 lakh.
  • Earlier the taxation rates were absolutely free. But now after the Budget 2021, the rate will be 10% if it a long-term gain and if it is a short-term gain, the rate will exceed to 15%.
  • This will impact only for those ULIP policies which are bought after 1 February, 2021.
  • For those who pay annual premiums below ₹2.5 lakh, they would still get the tax-exemption benefits.
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Detailed information about Income Tax E-Campaign :

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  • The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was authorized by the two central boards primarily the Central Board of Indirect Tax and Customs (CBIC) and secondarily, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) for preparing the possibility to exchange or deliver tax related information based on real time. This is a gateway to link the GST portal with the portal of income taxes. 
  • The assessee who has not filed the income tax return or GST return will be able to see their GSTR-2A purchases on the income tax portal, further enabling the TDS and other High Value Transactions link with the Income Tax Department. 
  • A message will be delivered to every assessee from the tax department that is similar to Marketing campaign. It can be either in the form of an email or in the form of an SMS. The taxpayers or assessee shall receive the message in such a way that the department has already received the information regarding the financial transactions or activities (if any) to the subsequent account for the financial year. This message is also regarding your absence in filing the Income Tax return for the next assessment year. 
  • With the delivery of this above message, the intention behind the taxation department is to make sure that you are ready to file your returns/ pay your taxes before the due date so that you are saved from facing any further huge consequences from the department such as paying of the tax along with interest and penalty, etc., at the later stage. 
  • The main objective of the Income tax e-campaign is to identified the taxpayers and to verify their financial transactions related information received by the I-T department from various sources such as Statement of Financial Transactions (SFT), Tax Deduction at Source (TDS), Tax Collection at Source (TCS), Foreign Remittances (Form 15CC) etc. 
  • The department has collected information related to GST, exports, imports and transactions in securities, derivatives, commodities and mutual funds under information triangulation set up. 
  • The exact procedure for submitting replies to the income tax e-campaign is to visit the income tax compliance portal or official online portal to submit your responses along with proper and accurate credentials and other information related to other person/ year, duplicity, or the information that has been denied. 
  • Considering all the entered details to be correct, the assessee can file the income tax returns after the payment of the taxes. In case the assessee is not liable to file returns, he or she can submit an online response under the link ‘Response on non-filing of return’ on Compliance Portal. If in any certain case, the assessee has already filed the income taxes but still left declared incorrect due to tax liability, then the assessee is still able to pay the taxes and file the revised returns on the same compliance portal. 
  • In case you fail to file a return or pay your taxes and fail to submit a response to the Income tax department by the due date, you will be excluded from further filing of the returns.  You will be initiated under the proceedings of the Income Tax Act, 1961, and shall be determined with your income and tax liability. Then you will receive an assessment notice, where you will end up paying interest and penalty in addition to tax liability. 

Message that shall be sent by the Income Tax Department to every assessee who hasn’t paid the tax: 

“The Income Tax Department has received information on financial transactions/activities relating to XXXXXX729X for Financial Year 2019-20. However, as per records available, you do not appear to have filed an Income Tax Return for Assessment Year 2020-21 (relating to FY 2019-20).”

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Step-by-step procedure to submit the reply on the income e-filing compliance portal:

  • Visit the income tax compliance portal at https://www.compliance.insight.gov.in or https://www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in 
  • Login to the e-filing portal by using the necessary credentials.
  • Your personal id will open with a new page. 
  • Selecting any of the options given below:
  1. Information is correct
  2. Information is not fully correct
  3. Information is related to other Person/ Year
  4. Information is duplicate/ included in other displayed information
  5. Information is denied.
  • After the selecting your desired option, you can further click on the submit button to complete the e-filing procedure. 

Procedure to view the submitted response on each Information:

  • Visit the Compliance Portal at https://compliance.insight.gov.in 
  • You can also login in to the e-filing portal by using the URL https://www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in 
  • Next you need to click on the ‘Compliance Portal’ link available in “My Account” or “Compliance” tab. 
  • After successful login, click on ‘e-Campaign’ Tab available at home page of Compliance Portal to view Information Summary screen. 
  • Click on “Financial Year” under Significant Transactions/Non- Filing of Return/High Risk Transactions option (Whichever is applicable). 
  • Click on ‘Financial Year’ available under ‘e-Campaign–Information Confirmation’. (Applicable for non-filing of return). 
  • Click on the “>” button to view information in detail. 
  • Click on the “View Response” button under Information detail. 
  • With this, a Pop-up window will appear displaying the details of the response submitted by the taxpayer.
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Updates on how the PF rules shall be Taxable:

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  • As per the Union Budget 2021, taxes are applied to those employees who had emanated their excessive contribution into any EPF account of more than 2.5 lakh Indian Rupees.
  • During the announcement of Union Budget 2021, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had clearly stated the purpose of taxation upon the provident funds. The instruction inclined directly towards the interests enacted over employee’s benefactors that supposedly seem higher each year from the margin of 2.5 lakh Indian Rupees. This taxation shall be applied from the start of the month of April 2021. Annual contributions up to Rs 2.5 lakh has been kept as the deposit limit for which interest is tax exempt.
  • On a plain reading of the budget documents, it appears that tax will apply to the interest earned on contributions made to Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF), Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF) as well as Public Provident Fund (PPF). However, tax experts have clarified that there are separate limits for EPF/VPF and PPF i.e., contributions to PPF and EPF/VPF will not be aggregated for the purpose of calculating the Rs 2.5 lakh limit.
  • Effectively, this would mean that an individual will still enjoy tax exemption on the interest earned on PPF contributions because a person is not allowed to contribute more than Rs 1.5 lakh per financial year to PPF as per current laws.
  • Note that every month, at least 12% of an employee’s basic salary and performance wages is compulsorily deducted as provident fund, while the employer contributes another 12%. With this taxation, the government wants to curb high income earners from self-contributing more to their PF accounts.
  • The Memorandum Explaining Provisions of Finance Bill, 2021, says there are instances of some employees contributing huge amounts to PF, and the entire interest accrued being exempt from tax under clause 11 and clause 12 of Section 10 of the Income Tax Act. “This exemption without any threshold benefits only those who can contribute a large amount to these funds as their share,” said the memorandum.
  • Besides the official announcement, Finance Minister Sitharamanalso explained a better idea to rationalise the tax exemptions. She suggested to divide the interests to different PFs, rather than sticking to just one provident fund. This way each fund will have a limited and restricted contribution of 2.5 lakhs per annum. This method is applied to all those whose income is higher than the median ranged employees.
  • This move will affect mostly the high-income earners and High Net-worth Individuals (HNIs). Under the existing tax provisions, interest received/accrued from employee’s provident fund (EPF) is exempt from tax. The new rules will potentially impact employees in high income bracket or employees making large voluntary employee provident fund contributions.
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  • It is necessary to note that the new provision shall be accounted only to the employee’s contributions rather than the aggregate contribution maintained to the fund carried each year.
  • Added by Sitharaman, tax returns shall be about 8% as the employee’s tax benefit, as it is assured under the tax ambit.
  • Aside from high-income earners, salaried employees who use Voluntary Provident Fund (VPF) to invest more than mandatory 12% of basic pay, will also be impacted.
  • A large tax-free interest accrual which is not taxed on withdrawal either, is now being rationalised and will mostly impact those in the high-income bracket. The method of calculation will be specified later as the taxation details have not yet been shared by the government.
  • Meanwhile, around 4 million subscribers of the government’s pension scheme Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) are yet to receive interest payments even after one-and-a-half months of the government announcing the payout for 2019-20. The delay occurred due to a mismatch of KYC or identification of the employees at the employer’s end. The field offices of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) are reaching out to the employers
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