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GST in India, Wikimedia commons

The GST Council on Friday decided to roll out in six months a new method of filing monthly returns and to take over ownership of the GST Network (GSTN), even as it deferred a decision on imposing a sugar cess and allowing an incentive for digital payments.

Briefing reporters here following the 27th meeting of the GST Council, the Chairman and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the Council had decided to set up two separate groups of five Finance Ministers of states to give recommendations both on the imposition of a cess on sugar as well as a 2 per cent incentive for making payments digitally.

“The GST Council discussed the change in ownership structure of GSTN. As per the original structure of GSTN, 49 per cent is held by the government and balance 51 per cent by other entities,” Jaitley said.

“I had made a suggestion that this shareholding of 51 per cent should be taken over by the government and divided equally between the states and the Centre.

“Eventually, the central government should hold 50 per cent and states will hold 50 per cent collectively. The collective share of states will be pro-rata divided among them per their GST ratios,” he added.

GST Filing, Pixabay

Noting that sugarcane farmers are in deep distress due to rise in costs, Jaitley said the Council decided to constitute a group of five ministers within two days to make a recommendation on ways to meet contingency arising when the cost of a commodity is higher than its selling price. The committee will submit its report within two weeks keeping in view the urgency of the matter, Jaitley said.

“The committee will examine how these contingencies to be addressed by the GST regime. Its constitution will be announced in the next two days,” he said.

A separate group of five ministers from states will be constituted in two days to recommend a 2 per cent concession, subject to a ceiling of Rs 100 per transaction, to consumers if they pay through digital modes. This report will be submitted before the next GST Council meeting.

“The issue before the council as whether on digital payments through either the banking mode or the cheque mode or any form of digitised mode, a two percent incentive should be given to those who pay entirely through digitised mode. This would be subject to a cap of Rs 100 per voucher and would not apply to the composition dealers,” the Minister said.

Also Read: To Review The Existing Framework of MIIs, SEBI Puts Forward Higher Regulatory Requirement

The Council on Friday also approved the new simplified model of filing returns, to be implemented after six months, providing for one monthly return for all taxpayers, except composition dealers and those with nil tax liability.

“Composition dealers and dealers having nil transaction shall have facility to file quarterly return,” Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia said elaborating on the new model.

He said the six-month transition phase is required to get the new software ready, during which the present system of filing GSTR 3B and GSTR 1 returns would continue, adding that taxpayers could continue to claim provisional credit in this period. (IANS)



Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday asked the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) to prevent dumping of toxic wastes in India.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday asked the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) to prevent dumping of toxic wastes in India. Speaking at an event to celebrate DRI's 64th foundation day, Sitharaman lauded DRI's compact strength of about 800 officers for their relentless efforts despite the imminent risks. The Finance Minister stated that the officers may be keeping a low profile, but they are acting like the frontline defence forces, doing spectacular work in safeguarding the economic frontiers of the country. "The recent smuggling attempts of huge quantities of narcotics, gold, red sanders, ivory, cigarettes etc. unearthed by DRI were appreciated by the Finance Minister," the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

"Sitharaman said that the message through such enforcement actions should be such that these acts of brazen attempts at smuggling are nipped in the bud," the statement added. The Finance Minister also said that better coordination among the law enforcement and intelligence gathering agencies and sharing of actionable intelligence are the way forward in protecting the frontiers of the country more efficiently. "Sitharaman also asked the DRI to focus on interdicting dual use technology items as well as preventing the dumping of toxic wastes in our country," the statement said. (IANS/ MBI)

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Photo by Brandon Romanchuk on Unsplash

Tech giant Amazon has expanded the sound detection capabilities of Alexa along with more features.

Tech giant Amazon has expanded the sound detection capabilities of Alexa along with more features. Alexa can now identify the sounds of running water and appliances beeping, reports Android Central. This means users can set up an Alexa routine to notify themselves when the washer beeps to indicate that laundry is finished, the report said.

When Alexa detects that the faucet has been left open, it will send users a notification as well so they can take appropriate action, it added. Amazon previously said at its event in September that it would add the ability to programme Alexa to recognise custom sounds, but that feature has yet to arrive. Having said that, the two new sound detection capabilities not only help users save energy, but they also make it easier to avoid paying for unnecessary charges on your home utilities, the report said.

The retail giant has also announced ultrasound motion detection, which will allow you to set up "Occupancy Routines" on additional Echo devices. This feature allows your smart speaker to detect nearby motion and initiate a routine, such as turning on the lights. It is compatible with many of the best Alexa speakers including the 4th-gen Echo, Echo Dot and Echo Dot with Clock. (IANS/ MBI)

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Comforting Christmas cocktails help you enjoy the celebrations and get into the festive spirit.

By Olivia Sarkar
It's the holiday season, which means it's time to be merry! As the month of December approaches, we're all in a festive mindset. With Christmas just around the corner, there will be plenty of parties and get-togethers with friends and family.

Comforting Christmas cocktails help you enjoy the celebrations and get into the festive spirit. The Leela Palaces, Hotels, and Resorts offer distinctive cocktails ranging from Hot Toddies to Decadent Egg Nogs. Sit back and enjoy one martini at a time to make the festive season a little brighter.

Dirty Chai Eggnog:

Eggnog is a Christmas favorite that is accustomed to toasts for good health and prosperity. It is an American tradition that has spread around the world. Historically, it has been made using eggs, milk, and alcohol. Our culinary artists have given an Indian twist to this winter drink, making it quintessentially desi!


30 ml Bourbon
30 ml Baileys
90 ml Hot milk tea
Whole Spices
Sweet cream foam to top up

Cinnamon powder and star anise.

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