TAIT inspired by the GST Council that recently met in New Delhi has reached a consensus on roll out of GST across the country from July 1, 2017, which was announced by Arun Jaitley, Minister of Finance, Government of India. According to the agreement reached between the Center and the States at the 9th meeting of the GST Council, States will have powers to assess and administer 90% of the tax payers under Rs. 1.5 crore annual turnovers while the remaining would be controlled by the Center. For tax payers with more than Rs. 1.5 crore turnover, States and the Center will control and administer them in 50:50 ratio. Work on designing the systems and processes for the GST Network (GSTN) are at an advanced stage.
The current stress on building a cashless economy after the demonetization of the Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 currency notes announced in November 2016 also means that digital payment solutions will see increased adoption, adding to statutory reporting and compliance requirements.
“The recent significant developments in the country’s legal/regulatory business environment mean that SME business owners and managers will be held up to higher standards of scrutiny than ever before. Transparency in operations and corporate governance best practices are not just a necessity but are seen as tools leveraged by enlightened corporate managements. This makes it all the more necessary for IT Business Partners to ‘walk the talk’ and adopt a structured approach towards day-to-day compliance issues. In the long term, this would not only boost employee morale, but also lay the foundation for sustained innovation and revenue growth, a strong brand image and a healthy bottom-line”, stated Rushabh Shah, President, TAIT.
Accordingly, TAIT, the premier association of IT companies in Mumbai, comprises of SME sector IT vendors, distributors and reseller. Partners organized a ‘Knowledge Series’ Workshop on the theme ‘Effective Administration of Statutory Compliances’. The workshop was conducted by Ramesh Soni, Principal Consultant, RLS Consulting, who emphasized that compliance to statutes is in the best interests of cordial employer-employee relationships, and would in turn lead to the sustained growth of the organization.
Addressing the participating TAIT members Soni said, “Statutory compliance is a must for every progressive employer and it is important to comply with the laws of the land to make sure that the organization plays a positive role in encouraging transparency in business through corporate governance best practices. Usually, if not taken care of during the early days of founding of an organization, it may impact growth and corporate reputation. In the present competitive globalised business environment, it would be very demanding for an employer to handle statutory compliance without the support of a good payroll management solution.”
Soni briefed TAIT delegates about the traits of two types of employers in the SME sector – firstly, those who want to make sure all systems and facilities are available from the day an employee joins the organization, irrespective of their size; secondly, those who would like to deal with statutory issues as they arise.
He went on to state that there are specific Acts (laws) and Rules applicable to businesses, based on the industry and location. Taking up the Maharashtra Shops & Establishments Act, 1948, Soni said that to safeguard the interests of workers and to regulate the working conditions of employees engaged in shops, commercial establishments, hotels, theatres and other establishments, the Act came into force on January 11, 1948. Similarly, Bombay Shops and Establishments Act is another piece of State Legislation. The Act defines the terms ‘apprentice’, ‘commercial establishment’, ‘employee’, ‘establishment’, and ‘shop’. It is a comprehensive legislation regulating working hours, rest intervals, weekly holidays, spread-over, leave with wages, health and safety, and employment of women and children. It provides for inspection of commercial establishments and shops by inspectors appointed under the Act. However, the Act is not applicable to Chartered Accountants and Legal Practitioners.
Rushabh Shah, President, TAIT added, “Adhering to statutory compliance rules is essential for all SME organizations, to secure their businesses from legal difficulties. A profound knowledge of statutory compliance rules and regulations is needed to minimize risks linked with non-compliance. Like other critical business decisions involving branding, marketing, training and hiring of key employees, this aspect merits unwavering focus from the SME owner-manager.”