The State Economic Reconstruction Forum (SERF) has listed its demands before the finance minister Abdul Rahim Rather in a meeting that was also attended by all the officials involved with the trade and taxation directly.
Here are the demands that the Forum has flagged in the meeting. These demands were released by the Forum in a statement:
On the issues related to taxation it was pointed out that combined VAT return for three Quarters to be filed by the Fourth Quarter should be dispensed with, while as stocks remaining should be written off as per self certification of affected traders depending on their losses without any hassle’s including that of FIR etc.
There is a need to allow import of new office equipment/ plant and machinery/ reconstruction items for use by affected business establishments.
The remission of the taxes collected by the traders during second Quarter needs to be given by the Government and the audited report for the Financial Year 2013-14 due to be filed by October be dispensed with.
Order for contract tax to be deducted at source be withdrawn for the current year.
Traders be issued general licenses that restrict their activity if they want to trade in other items.
In regard to liquidity of finances the SERF wanted the Government to immediately establish a revolving fund to make payment to contractors, suppliers, traders who have executed works, supplied goods to various Government Departments. The meeting was told that all payments of contracts up to date have been released and SERF was asked to bring to the notice of the Government any pending payment.
It was also pointed out that the State Government is majority share holder in J & K Bank whereby it should ask the bank to give loans / additional loan as per RBI guidelines for natural calamity on the rate of interest based on their cost as a special dispensation.
State Level bankers Committee (SLBC) should be asked to go beyond it RBI guideline and a meeting with SERF of SLBC should be arranged.
It was also pointed out to the Finance Minister that Banks have underinsured lot of accounts of borrower for which Banks should be made accountable. SERF was asked to give details of the same so that necessary action be taken Subsequently the Commissioner Commercial Tax held a meting with SERF where except for remission of Taxes collected by the traders the following demands of SERF were accepted in principle:
(A) The stocks of affected traders to be considered “Written Off” till September 24, 2014 on self certification of traders.
(B) The filing of Returns for Second Quarter of affected traders to be dispensed with.
(C) Exemption on Entry Tax.
(D) Goods with transport companies destroyed/damaged by floods to be considered on case to case basis.
(E) E-filing of returns to be made optional for time being.
(F) The remission of tax for the second quarter to be recommended by Commercial Taxes Department to the Government who will issue necessary orders for it. The remission has been in principle agreed to by the Finance Minister.