Athena In News


March 28, 2020

 Measures announced on March 24, 2020 with respect to extension of time for various compliances and allied matters for benefit of corporates

Financial Sector

a) Debit Card holders can withdraw cash from any ATM without any charge for the next three months.
b) Minimum balance requirement for bank accounts waived off and no penalty to be charged for breaching minimum balance.
c) Bank charges to be reduced for digital transactions.


a) Last date for filing income tax returns for FY 2018-19 extended to June 30, 2020
b) Delayed payments made till June 30, 2020 will have a reduced interest of 9% from the previous 12%.
c) Delayed deposit of TDS shall carry reduced interest of 9% from the previous 18%.
d) Aadhaar-PAN linking extended once again to June 30 from March 31.
e) Vivaad se Vishwas scheme announced earlier shall be extended to June 30 and no additional payment of 10% shall be applicable.
f) All compliances under Income Tax Act, Wealth Tax Act, Prohibition of Benami Transaction Act (Prohibition) Act1988, Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015 etc. where time limit was expiring on March 31, 2020 have been extended to June 30, 2020.
g) All GST returns for March, April, May 2020 and compensation returns extended to June 30, 2020.
h) For companies having turnover of Rs.5 crore or lower, no late fee or penalty will be charged and for companies having turnover of more than Rs.5 crore, only a reduced interest of 9% shall be charged.

Custom & Excise

Under the Sabka Vishwas Scheme, the due date to complete pending payments of central and excise duties have been extended to June 30, 2020 without any interest or late fee charge.

Corporate Affairs

a) Companies and Boards that do not hold a meeting with their independent directors will
not be held in violation of rules under Companies Act, 2013.
b) Moratorium issued from April 1 to September 30, 2020 for MCA 21 registry and no
additional fee for any late filing fee shall be charged.
c) Relaxation provided for holding board meetings to 60 days, and the relaxation shall
continue till next two quarters.
d) Requirement for filing declaration for commencement of business is being extended by
6 months in addition to the pre-existing 6 months period, for the newly incorporated
e) A director of a company who has not stayed in India for 182 days or more will not be
held in violation under the Companies Act, 2013.
f) Deadline to create a deposit reserve of 20 percent till April 30 has been moved to June
g) Threshold under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code for triggering the insolvency
proceedings for SMEs is increased from Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 1 crore.
h) If the circumstances persist beyond April, then Section 7, 9 and 10 of the Insolvency
and Bankruptcy Code which relate to initiation of insolvency proceedings, shall be
suspended for a period of 6 months.

Fisheries Sector

a) All sanitary export permits which were to expire between April 1 and April 15, shall be
extended by 3 more months.
b) Delay of upto 1 month on arrival of assignments shall be overlooked.
c) Rebooking of quarantines cubicles in Chennai’s aquarium, for cancelled assignments
shall not lead to any additional booking charges.

Measurers announced on March 26, 2020 for benefit of farmers, workmen and

Garib Kalyan Yojna

a) Frontline Workers Benefits

Government shall provide medical insurance cover of Rs. 50 Lakh per person to those
at the front-lines fighting the pandemic. This will include the doctors, nurses,
paramedical staff, sanitation and ancillary workers.

b) Food Security

80 crore poor people to get 5Kg of rice or wheat per month in addition to the 5Kg they
are already receiving for next three months. They will also get 1Kg of preferred pulse
for the next 3 months. These can be availed in two instalments. This is expected to
benefit 80 crore individuals.

c) Direct Benefit Transfers

i. Farmers currently receiving Rs.6,000 per annum under PM Kisan Yojna to get
front payment of Rs. 2,000 for the next financial year, estimated to benefit 8.69
crore farmers.
ii. Wage increase under MNERGA from Rs.182 to Rs.202. Estimated benefit of Rs.
2,000 for 5 crore families.
iii. Rs.1,000 one-time ex-gratia amount to be given to 3 crore poor widows and
disabled persons.
iv. 20 crore women holding Jan Dhan account shall get ex-gratia amount of Rs. 500
per month for the next 3 months.
v. Women in the 8.3 crore below poverty line families covered under the Ujwala
scheme shall get free cylinders for 3 months.

d) Organized Sector Benefits

i. Government to pay Employee Provident Fund contribution for employer and
employee for the next three months, for establishments having upto 100
employees and 90% of employees earning less than Rs.15,000 p.m.
ii. Employee Provident Fund Organization scheme regulations to be amended to
allow non-recoverable advance of 75% of the amount or three months wages,
whichever is lower from their accounts.

e) Unorganized Sector Benefits

State governments to utilize Rs.31,000 crore funds in construction welfare fund to
support 3.5 crore construction sector workers.

f) Self Help Groups

Women in Self-Help Groups can avail collateral free loan of up to Rs.20 lakh, estimated
to benefit about 63 lakh Self-Help Groups.

g) Others

District mineral welfare fund to be utilized to fund medical testing and screening.

Measures announced on 27 March, 2020 by the Reserve Bank of India for the banking
sector and financial sector

Banking & Financial Sector

a) Cash Reserve Ratio of all banks reduced by 100 basis points to 3.0% of net demand and
time liabilities from March 28, 2020, for a period of 1 year till 26 March, 2021.
b) Minimum daily Cash Reserve Ratio balance maintenance requirement reduced from
90% to 80% from March 28, 2020, by way of one-time dispensation available up to
June 26, 2020.
c) Banks may borrow overnight at their discretion by dipping up to 3% into the Statutory
Liquidity Ratio, from the previous 2% limit, applicable up to June 30, 2020.
d) Monetary policy rate corridor shall be widened from 50 bps to 65 bps.
e) RBI policy repo rate reduced by 75 basis points to 4.4% and fixed rate reverse repo rate
which sets the floor of the liquidity adjustment facility corridor reduced by 90 basis
point to 4%.
f) RBI to conduct auction of targeted term repos of up to 3 years tenor of appropriate sizes
for a total amount of up to Rs.1,00,000 crore at a floating rate linked to the policy repo
g) All commercial banks, co-operative banks, all-India financial institutions, and NBFCs
are permitted to allow a moratorium of 3 months on payment of instalments in respect
of all term loans outstanding as on March 1, 2020. Repayment schedule and due dates
shifted across board by 3 months.
h) Lending institutions permitted to allow a deferment of 3 months on payments of interest
in all working capital facilities sanctioned in form of cash/overdraft, which was
outstanding as on March 1, 2020.
i) Lending institutions may also reduce margins and/or reassess the working capital cycle
for borrowing sin terms of working capital facilities in form of cash credit/overdraft.
j) Implementation of Net Stable Funding Ratio introduced under the Basel Committee on
Banking Supervision deferred by six months from April 1, 2020 to October 1, 2020.
k) Implementation of last tranche of 0.625% of the capital conservation buffer as per Basel
standards shall be deferred from March 31, 2020 to September 30, 2020. Consequently,
pre-specified trigger for loss absorption through conversion/write-down of additional
tier 1 instruments shall remain at 5.5% pf risk-weighted assets and shall rise to 6.125%
on September 30, 2020.
l) All deferments are not to be considered as Non-Performing Assets, nor shall they affect
the credit history.
m) Banks operating in International Financial Services Centre Banking Units are permitted
to participate in offshore non-deliverable forward market from June 1, 2020.

The update is intended for your general information only. The information and opinions contained
in this document are derived from public sources which we believe to be reliable and accurate
but which, without further investigation, cannot be warranted as to their accuracy, completeness
or correctness. It is not intended to be nor should be regarded as legal advice and no one should
act on such information without appropriate professional advice. Athena Legal accepts no
responsibility for any loss arising from any action taken or not taken by anyone using this material.

37 Link Road, First Floor, Lajpat Nagar-
III, New Delhi-110024
Phone: +91- 11- 4200 4400