Legislation UpdatesNotifications

Central Board of Direct taxes notifies a clarification that the imposition of a charge on the prescribed electronic modes under Section 269 SU of the Income Tax Act.

Based on Section 10 A of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2000, any charge including the Merchant Discount Rate shall not be applicable on or after 01-01-2020 on payment made through prescribed electronic modes.

However, representations have been received that some banks are imposing and collecting charges on transactions carried out through UPI. A certain number of transactions are allowed free of charge beyond which every transaction bears a charge.

The above-stated act on part of banks is a breach of Section 10 A of the PSS Act as well as Section 269SU of the IT Act. Such breach attracts penal provisions under Section 271 DB of the IT Act as well as Section 26 of the PSS Act.

Therefore, bank are advised to immediately refund the charges collected, if any, on or after 1st January, 2020 on transactions carried out using the electronic modes prescribed under Section 269 SU of the IT Act and not to impose charges on any future transactions carried through the said prescribed modes.

Following were prescribed electronic modes under Section 269 SU of the Income Tax Act:

  • Debit Card powered by RuPay
  • Unified Payments interface (UPI)(BHIM-UPI)
  • Unified Payments Interface Quick Response Code (UPI QR Code) (BHIM-UPI QR Code)

Legislation UpdatesNotifications

National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) and Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) systems – Waiver of charges

The Reserve Bank has since reviewed the various charges levied by it on the member banks for transactions processed in the RTGS and NEFT systems. In order to provide an impetus to digital funds movement, it has been decided that with effect from July 1, 2019, processing charges and time varying charges levied on banks by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for outward transactions undertaken using the RTGS system, as also the processing charges levied by RBI for transactions processed in NEFT system will be waived by the Reserve Bank.

The banks are advised to pass on the benefits to their customers for undertaking transactions using the RTGS and NEFT systems with effect from July 1, 2019, i.e. today.

This directive is issued under Section 10 (2) read with Section 18 of Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (Act 51 of 2007).

Please note: Circular can be referred here — CIRCULAR

[Circular dt. 11-06-2019]

Reserve Bank of India

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Jammu & Kashmir High Court: A Single Judge Bench of Sanjay Kumar Gupta, J., dismissed a petition filed under Section 561-A of the Jammu & Kashmir Criminal Procedure Code, 1889 (CrPC), whereby the order of framing of charge passed by the Additional Sessions Judge, Jammu, was challenged.

The respondent/complainant was traveling in his car along with his family members when petitioners in their car and a bike started following the respondent’s car. The petitioners were sometimes coming in front of the respondent’s car and sometimes behind it. On enquiring about the actions of petitioners, the respondent and his wife were beaten by the petitioners with a baseball stick. The respondent cried for help and some passerby intervened and the petitioner fled away from the scene thereafter.

The main issue that arose before the Court was whether the order of the ASJ suffered from any sort of legal infirmities.

The Court observed that according to the reports of the doctor, the injuries received by petitioner and his wife were not grievous in nature, however, non-seriousness of injuries should not be a criterion for framing charges against the accused. Factors such as place of injury; the intentions of accused at the time of inflicting the injuries, weapon of offence with which injuries are caused and other circumstances of the case must be kept in mind while framing the charges. The Court observed that in the instant case, the petitioners dragged the respondents out of their car and started beating them, it was only after the respondent started making hue and cry, some pedestrians gathered and saved the respondent and his wife. Had some person not come on spot, respondent and his wife would have been killed by the accused persons.

The Court held that considering the totality of facts and circumstances of the case, the ASJ did not commit any error while framing charges against the accused under Sections 307, 504 and 506 of the Ranbir Penal Code. Resultantly, the petition was dismissed.[Babloo Kumar v. State of J&K,2018 SCC OnLine J&K 834, order dated 16-11-2018]


Hot Off The PressNews

Supreme Court: A 5-Judge Constitution Bench  comprising of CJ Dipak Misra and R.F. Nariman, A.M. Khanwilkar, Dr D.Y. Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra, JJ. is likely to pronounce judgment on the petition filed by Public Interest Foundation (a non-governmental organization) seeking disqualification of politicians, including Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of legislative assemblies (MLAs) from contesting elections, once charges are framed against them.

The Court had earlier, on August 28, reserved the judgment in the matter. The Court had indicated that voters have a right to know the antecedents of candidates and the Election Commission could be asked to direct political parties to ensure that persons, facing criminal charges, do not contest on their tickets using their poll symbols.

The Court started hearing of the matter on August 9. The issues for consideration before the Court were:

  • Whether the court can lay down additional disqualifications beyond Article 102(e) and Section 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951?
  • Whether the disqualification should be triggered upon conviction as it exists presently or upon framing of charges by the court?
  • Whether filing of false affidavits under Section 125-A of the RP Act should be a ground of disqualification?

Attorney General K.K. Venugopal, appearing for the Centre, had stated that the Parliament has made a distinction between an accused and a convict and there has been a provision for disqualification in the RP Act upon conviction of a lawmaker. The Centre, deriving strength in its argument from the principle that every man is innocent until proven guilty, had also contended that such course would create a  pre-condition that would adversely affect the right of the candidates to participate in polls; the judiciary should not venture into this legislative arena.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Bombay High Court: A Single Judge Bench comprising of K.R. Shriram, J. decided an admiralty suit wherein it was held that the claim of charges on the sale proceeds of MT Pratibha Bheema (marine vessel)  constituted maritime lien.

The said vessel was anchored outside Panaji Port, it had developed a technical snag; in view of the impending monsoon, the plaintiff State of Goa towed MT Pratibha Bheema to Mormugoa Port. While anchored at the port, the vessel was sold. Since, at the time of sale, the vessel was within the limits of area controlled by the plaintiff, it demanded various charges from the sale proceed. The question before the Court was whether plaintiff’s claim was secured by maritime lien on sale proceeds of MT Pratibha Bheema. According to the plaintiff, its claim was a maritime claim within the meaning of Article 1(l) of International Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules Relating to the Arrest of Sea going Ships, 1952 and Article 1(n) of International Convention on the Arrest of Ships, 1999.

At the outset, High Court noted that plaintiff produced all the documents to substantiate its claim; and in fact, the defendants conceded that heads of claim had been sufficiently proved. The Court referred to Article 4(1)(d) of International Convention on Maritime Liens and Mortgages, 1993 which reads, “claims for port, canal, and other waterway dues and pilotage dues”. It was noted that India is a signatory to the Convention. Following its earlier decision, the Court held that said Convention could be said to be part and parcel of Indian law or to have force of law in India. Moreover, Section 4(1)(n) of Admiralty (Jurisdiction and Settlement of Maritime Claims) Act 2017, provides that dues in connection with any port, harbour, canal, dock or light tolls, other tolls, waterway or any similar kind chargeable under any law for the time being in force, will be a maritime claim. Also, Section 9 provides for inter se priority on maritime lien. The Court held that Section 4(1)(n) read with Section 9(1)(d) of Admiralty Act provides that plaintiff’s claim will be in the nature of maritime lien. Plaintiff’s claim was allowed with interest of 12% pa. The suit was disposed of accordingly. [State of Goa v. Sale Proceeds of the Vessel MT Pratibha Bheema,  2018 SCC OnLine Bom 1320, dated 07-06-2018]