Promulgation of the Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Ordinance, 2016



The President of India approves the Promulgation of the Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Ordinance, 2016 today;

The President of India has approved the promulgation of the Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Ordinance, 2016 today i.e. on 30th December, 2016.


The Ordinance is a follow-up to the decision taken by the Government of India to cancel the legal tender character of the existing series of banknotes, as on November 8, 2016, in the denominations of Rs.500 and Rs.1000 (Specified Bank Notes-SBNs) in circulation.

The main objectives of the Ordinance are (i) to provide clarity and finality to the liability of the Reserve Bank of India and the Government of India for the SBNs; (ii) to provide an opportunity to those persons who were unable to deposit the SBNs within the time provided; and (iii) to declare holding, transferring or receiving SBNs as illegal, with provisions for penalty for contravention of any of the provisions of the Ordinance.

This decision follows a number of steps taken to eliminate the menace of unaccounted money in the economy including setting up of a Special Investigation Team (SIT); enacting a law regarding undisclosed foreign income and assets; amending the Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements between India and Mauritius and India and Cyprus; reaching an understanding with Switzerland for getting information on Bank accounts held by Indians with HSBC; encouraging the use of non-cash and digital payments; amendments to the Benami Transactions Act; and implementation of the Income Declaration Scheme 2016. It is a move in line with the government’s initiatives to curb unaccounted money in the system, money laundering and tax avoidance.

As on 30th December, 2016 a part of the Specified Bank Notes (SBN) have come back to the Reserve Bank of India and these are now a part of the formal financial system, increasing the deposit base of the banks and improving their ability to lend. People have also embraced and are continuing to adopt different digital forms of payments. The ecosystem of digital payments infrastructure is continually being improved and strengthened to make it easier for more people to adapt to this form of payment.

As was notified on 8th November, 2016 those persons who were unable to exchange or deposit the SBNs in their bank accounts on or before 30th December, 2016 shall be given an opportunity to do so. Accordingly, this facility has been granted to all Indian citizens who were outside India from 9th November, 2016 to 30th December, 2016 to tender these SBNs at the specified Issue Offices of RBI until 31st March, 2017. For those citizens of India who are not resident in India, this facility would be available till June 30, 2017 in order to allow them adequate time to plan a visit as per their convenience.

The above facility would be subject to the regulations of the notification “Foreign Exchange Management (Export and Import of Currency) Regulations, 2015. As per these Regulations bringing back such currency into the country is restricted to Rs.25,000/- per person. Separate FEMA provisions are applicable to persons in Nepal and Bhutan which would continue to apply.

At the time of return to India the number and denominations of the SBN will need to be declared to the Customs authorities at the airports and other entry points. Necessary form for such declaration will be given out by the CBEC. The details of the declaration and statements that are required to be submitted along with the SBNs at the time of deposit in RBI Issue Offices will be separately announced by RBI. Any false declaration will invite a fine of Rs. 50,000 or five times the amount of the face value of the SBN tendered, whichever is higher.

After the period of exchange is over, the liabilities of the Reserve Bank and the guarantee of the Central Government towards the Specified Bank Notes will stand extinguished. Further, to prevent any continued parallel transactions with the SBNs by unscrupulous elements, after this period, holding, transferring and receiving SBNs will attract a fine of Rs.10,000 or five times the amount of the face value of the SBN involved in the contravention, whichever is higher.

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Change in Tariff Value of Crude Palm Oil, RBD Palm Oil, Others – Palm Oil, Crude Palmolein, RBD Palmolein, Others – Palmolein, Crude Soyabean Oil, Brass Scrap (All Grades), Poppy Seeds, Areca Nuts, Gold And Silver Notified

In exercise of the powers conferred by Sub-section (2) of Section 14 of the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962), the Central Board of Excise & Customs(CBEC), being satisfied that it is necessary and expedient so to do, hereby makes the following amendment in the notification of the Government of India in the Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue), No. 36/2001-Customs (N.T.), dated the 3rd August, 2001, published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part-II, Section-3, Sub-section (ii), vide number S. O. 748 (E), dated the 3rd August, 2001, namely:-

In the said notification, for TABLE-1, TABLE-2 and TABLE-3, the following Tables shall be substituted namely:-

TABLE-1


Sl. No.
Chapter/ heading/ sub-heading/tariff item
Description of goods
Tariff value
(US $Per Metric Tonne)
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
1
1511 10 00
Crude Palm Oil
793
2
1511 90 10
RBD Palm Oil
798
3
1511 90 90
Others – Palm Oil
796
4
1511 10 00
Crude Palmolein
802
5
1511 90 20
RBD Palmolein
805
6
1511 90 90
Others – Palmolein
804
7
1507 10 00
Crude Soya bean Oil
892
8
7404 00 22
Brass Scrap (all grades)
3218
9
1207 91 00
Poppy seeds
2545

TABLE-2

Sl. No.
Chapter/ heading/ sub-heading/tariff item
Description of goods
Tariff value
(US $)
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
1
71 or 98
Gold, in any form, in respect of which the benefit of entries at serial number 321 and 323 of the Notification No. 12/2012-Customs dated 17.03.2012 is availed
372 per 10 grams
2
71 or 98
Silver, in any form, in respect of which the benefit of entries at serial number 322 and 324 of the Notification No. 12/2012-Customs dated 17.03.2012 is availed
526 per kilogram 


TABLE-3

Sl. No.
Chapter/ heading/ sub-heading/tariff item
Description of goods
Tariff value
(US $ Per Metric Tonne )
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
1
080280
Areca nuts
2613

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Direct Tax Dispute Resolution Scheme- 2016 extended up to 31st January, 2017

In view of the representations received from various stakeholders and for the convenience of the taxpayers, the last date for availing the Direct Tax Dispute Resolution Scheme, 2016 (the Scheme)  has been extended up to 31st January, 2017. The scheme was to close on 31st December, 2016.
           
In order to reduce the pending litigation, the Scheme was introduced by the Finance Act, 2016. The Scheme came into force from 1st June, 2016 vide notification S.O. 1902(E) dated 26th May, 2016.

The full text of the notification in this regard is available on the departmental website www.incometaxindia.gov.in.

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