GAAR amendments finalised: Chidambaram

Chidambaram says amendments to the Income Tax Act will now go to the Prime Minister’s office for approval
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First Published: Sun, Nov 18 2012. 08 29 PM IST
Finance minister P. Chidambaram. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/ Mint
Finance minister P. Chidambaram. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/ Mint
Updated: Sun, Nov 18 2012. 11 29 PM IST
New Delhi: Amendments to General anti -avoidance rules (GAAR), the controversial law against tax avoidance through foreign investments, have been finalized, finance minister P. Chidambaram said on Sunday.
“I have finalized the amendments to the Chapter 10A of the Income Tax Act. Now, it will go to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and then we should be ready with the amendments and then the GAAR rules will reflect the amended Chapter 10A. That is under preparation and I think the work is almost complete. The drafting work is complete. So, GAAR is under control. I have taken the decisions, subject to Prime Minister’s approval and then cabinet,” he said in an interview.
On the issue relating to retrospective tax amendment on which the Shome committee had submitted its report, he said: “The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has given its views. I have taken decisions at my level.
The drafting is going on. Again it will go to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and then to the cabinet.” Referring to the Direct taxes code (DTC), he said, “We have now started work. This morning I spent two hours on that. Earlier I had spent several hours. We are looking at it. We have tabulated it...we will take a final decision.”
Chidambaram also indicated that the proposal to form the National Investment Board for expediting clearance to large projects will soon come up for approval before the cabinet.
“The cabinet note is with the cabinet secretariat and the PMO. It will be listed before the cabinet at a time when the PM decides it should be listed. But I saw in some newspapers ... that it is likely to be listed,” he said.
Concerned over delays in implementation of several mega projects, Chidambaram had recently proposed setting up of NIB under the Prime Minister to clear large projects. However, environment minister Jayanthi Natarajan had raised objections to the proposal.
When asked about the environment ministry’s views, he said, “They have some reservation which I think the officers have explained at a meeting...with the PMO.” He said like the cabinet committee on economic affairs, NIB is a cabinet committee under the PM. “And all decisions taken by any cabinet committee are the decisions of the government. NIB is no different except that the name is NIB. We can call it a cabinet committee on investment,” he added. PTI
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First Published: Sun, Nov 18 2012. 08 29 PM IST
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