Cooperative housing societies will now have to pay GST on maintenance charges

GST Appellate Authority for Advance Rulings (AAAR), Maharashtra bench rules that activities of societies or clubs constitute ‘supply’ and is liable for GST

The GST Appellate Authority for Advance Rulings (AAAR), Maharashtra bench has upheld an earlier order of the GST Authority for Advance Rulings (AAR) that goods and services tax (GST) is to be levied on maintenance charges collected by cooperative housing societies if the monthly subscription or contribution charged from members is more than Rs 7,500 per month and the annual aggregate turnover is Rs 20 lakh or more.

It should be remembered that in July this year the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) had said that a cooperative housing society will have to levy and collect GST (at the rate of 18%) on the total amount collected as maintenance charges, if it exceeds Rs 7,500 per month, per member. It had also noted that those societies with an annual turnover of more than Rs 20 lakh or less will not have to register under GST.

Smaller CHS with an annual turnover of Rs 20 lakh or less do not have to register under GST. Thus, they do not have any GST obligation, irrespective of the quantum of maintenance charges. The AAR had held the CHS’s activities towards its members have to be a ‘taxable supply’ under the GST laws

The South Mumbai society that had filed an appeal with the GST Appellate Authority for Advance Rulings (AAAR), Maharashtra bench had like other societies collected maintenance charges from its members such as water charges, electricity charges, property taxes, contribution to repair and maintenance fund, contribution to the sinking fund, car parking charges, interest on default charges as also property taxes.

The housing society had sought a clarification on whether these activities carried out by it amount to supply and whether they are liable to GST as also whether they are correctly discharging their GST liability for which invoices have been raised on the members of the society.

The South Mumbai housing society had contended that they were not carrying out any business in terms of Section 2 (17) of the CGST Act 2017 as they were a cooperative housing society and were not engaged in any trade, commerce, manufacture, profession, vocation, adventure, wager or any other similar activity.

The Maharashtra AAAR has upheld the AAR order and found that various activities are undertaken by the South Mumbai housing society, such as management, maintenance, administration of the society property amounts to supply.

It has held that provision of any facilities or benefits by a club, association or society to its members against a subscription or any other consideration would be construed as ‘business’ as per section 2 (17) of the CGST Act.

It has rejected the appellant’s contention to distinguish between commercial and a co-operative society on facts and also dismissed its submission that a particular transaction cannot be considered as business under Income Tax Laws by clarifying that Income Tax Act, 1961 is inapplicable under CGST Act, 2017.

It has also distinguished the society’s reliance on the SC judgment in the case of Calcutta Club, basis which the Appellant contended that a society can’t be said to be doing business with its members as both the society and its members are one and the same, owing to the common Principle of Mutuality.

It has held that under the CGST Act, 2017 “service” under CGST Act has been rendered a very wide connotation and “person” under section 2(84) includes both “incorporated and unincorporated clubs” and thus clarifies that “…both these deeming fictions…..convey the intention of the legislature to do away with the principle of mutuality…….”.

In a case concerning the Calcutta Club, the Supreme Court had in 2009 passed an order which dealt with the ‘principle of mutuality’ which meant that the the society and its members are not distinct entities and thus the activities of the CHS do not constitute a ‘supply’ and hence do not attract GST. It had said that the society’s charges cannot be treated as a ‘consideration’ under Section 2 (32) of the GST Act.

“In the present case the society is undertaking various sorts of activities that include the management, maintenance, administration of the society property, payment of various statutory taxes like payment of electricity bill of the common area of the society, water tax levied by the local authority along with organizing various social, cultural and recreational events for the members of the society against the contribution called society charges which can be reasonably construed as “consideration” in terms of Section 2 (31) of the CGST Act 2017.

It further said that looking at all these activities undertaken by the society for the benefit of its members, it is clear beyond doubt that under the provision of the CGST Act 2017, the appellant is doing “business” in terms of the definition provided under clause e of Section 2(17) of the CGST Act 2017.Also, since the appellant is providing services to its members against the consideration, named as “society charges” in the cause or furtherance of business, therefore, the activities would be construed as “supply” in terms of Section 7 (1) (a) of the CGST Act 2017 and accordingly be liable to GST, the order added.

“With the wide definitions of ‘supply’, ‘services’, ‘business’ under GST laws, it is no surprise that activities undertaken by residential welfare associations for their members have been held to be leviable to GST. It is to be noted that, presence of profit motive is no more a pre-requisite to make such transactions liable to tax,” said Harpreet Singh, Partner, Indirect Tax, KPMG.First Published on Nov 17, 2020 02:15 pm

Vandana RamnaniAssociate Editor, Real Estate|Moneycontrol News

https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/real-estate/cooperative-housing-societies-will-now-have-to-pay-gst-on-maintenance-charges-check-new-rules-6125591.html

This Netflix-Like Subscription Can Make Your Society Zero-Waste for Just Rs 180

“Once you subscribe with us, we own your waste. Right from the collection, segregation, recycling, and composting, our staff takes care of everything.”

Siva Sankar, the founder of Noval India, believes that India’s waste management sector is primarily taken care of by two factions — earth-friendly NGOs that rely on volunteers to keep the surroundings clean and mega projects by the government or private companies that treat the garbage.

With both factions, he sees a problem of long-term sustainability.

While there is always doubt on how long volunteers will keep the momentum going, the waste treatment plants by the government often do not run on full capacity or cannot be fitted everywhere due to space crunch.

In 2014, when the Central government had launched its flagship Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, many societies were asked to set up their composting units to treat wet waste at source to reduce the burden on landfills. Several municipal corporations had to introduce fines for societies (with more than 100 apartments) who refused to install the machine citing cost, maintenance and space issues.

Having experienced this first-hand, Siva, an alumnus of IIM Kozhikode, came up with a unique subscription model last October.

As per this model, any society from Pune, Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Kerala can subscribe to the Mumbai-based startup’s waste management services at a nominal cost of Rs 180 (per household) per month.

In return, you get a share of the revenue generated by selling compost and dry waste.

Noval was founded in 2014 to provide waste management solutions to societies, corporates, and educational institutions. Along with selling their machines, they also run the subscription model to suit people’s needs in a more feasible way.

“Once you subscribe with us, we own your waste. Right from the collection, segregation, recycling, and composting, our staff takes care of everything. We set up a couple of machines in your premises so that no waste goes outside the building,” Siva tells The Better India.

Under its model called ‘Green Lease’, the startup, which is registered under the Kerala Startup Mission, has signed the contract with 72 societies in different cities, 28 of which are presently using the services.

“Due to the lockdown, we had to halt our services. We service around 8,000 families and treat up to 12 tonnes of household waste daily,” he adds.

How This Model Works

The only criterion is to have 100 families living in your building. Noval’s largest customer is an apartment complex with 5,000 flats.

The machines, which are manufactured by Noval, don’t need much space. They can be fitted on the terrace as well, “For 150 households, we need an area of only 150 sq ft.”

The startup gives a seven-day free demonstration to the society, based on which the residential committee can sign the contract for a minimum of three years. However, the society has the option to discontinue at no cancellation charges with one month’s notice.

The startup then procures a NOC (no objection certificate) from the local municipal authority to set up the machines, including aerated composter, plastic shredder, incinerator and conveyor belt.

“The shredder shreds plastic waste, leaves and coconut waste. The composting machine converts wet waste into compost, and the incinerator treats sanitary waste. Meanwhile, the conveyor belt further segregates the dry waste into plastic, metal, and paper. We sell dry waste to local recyclers and compost to farmers. Half of the revenue is shared with the society members,” says Siva.

Though the machines run on power, they use minimal units to process the waste, “It takes ten units (Rs 70) to process 500 kilos of waste,” he adds.

Ronnie, a member of Purva Parkridge in Bengaluru, says, “We have 149 villas, and ever since we took the subscription in February this year, all our 100 kilos of waste is completely managed by Noval. This model certainly takes away the need for owning a compost machine and transfers the process to an open model with the experts.”

Besides helping societies go zero-waste, this one-of-its-kind model also generates jobs for informal waste pickers. The staff is hired on payroll and earn up to Rs 15,000 every month. This model ensures them a stable income and also provides a hygienic environment and dignity of labour.

“We are provided with a full-body PPE suit and gloves, and we come in contact with the waste for only a few minutes. The automatic machines take care of everything once we deposit the waste. It is a very safe and hygienic process that takes not more than two hours per society,” 45-year-old Asha Mohite, one of the operators from Mumbai, tells The Better India.

India generates nearly 62 million tonnes of waste every year, of which less than 50 per cent is recycled. With the mounting garbage crisis, solutions like the one provided by Siva and his team are not only feasible but also affordable.

Request for a free trial here.

(Edited by Shruti Singhal)

 

In Maharashtra, Co-op Societies Audit can be done by 31.12.2020 & AGM can be held by 31.3.2021

Annual General Body Can Be Held on or before before 31 03 2021 due to Corona. ALSO AUDIT FOR THE YEAR ENDEd 31 03 2020 TO BE DONE BY 31 12 2020.

 

जनसंपर्क कक्ष (मुख्यमंत्री सचिवालय)

मंत्रिमंडळ बैठक : दि. 23 जुलै 2020
एकूण निर्णय-4

सहकार विभाग

सहकारी संस्था अधिनियमात सुधारणा करण्यास मान्यता
लेखा परिक्षण, वार्षिक सर्वसाधारण सभेचा कालावधी वाढविण्याबाबत

महाराष्ट्र सहकारी संस्था अधिनियम 1960 मधील विविध कलमात सुधारणा करण्याचा निर्णय आज झालेल्या मंत्रिमंडळ बैठकीत घेण्यात आला. यानुसार कोरोनाच्या पार्श्वभूमीवर वार्षिक सर्वसाधारण सभेच्या कालावधीस आणि लेखा परिक्षणास मुदतवाढ देण्याची सुधारणा करण्यात येईल.

महाराष्ट्र सहकारी संस्था अधिनियम 1960 मधील कलम 27 मधील तरतुदीनुसार संस्थेच्या क्रियाशील सभासदांनाच संस्थेच्या निवडणूकीमध्ये मतदान करता येते. संस्थेचा क्रियाशील सभासद होण्यासाठी, काही किमान सेवा घेणे व 5 वर्षातून किमान एकदा वार्षिक सर्वसाधारण सभेस उपस्थित राहणे अपेक्षित आहे. मात्र कोरोना महामारीच्या प्रकोपामुळे कलम 75 मधील तरतूदीनुसार राज्यातील सहकारी संस्थांच्या वार्षिक सर्वसाधारण सभा दि. 30.09.2020 पर्यत घेणे शक्य नसल्याने संस्थांमधील सभासद अक्रियाशील होवून भविष्यात संस्थेच्या होणाऱ्या निवडणूकीत ते मतदार यादीतून वगळले जावून, मतदानापासून वंचित राहू शकतात. हे टाळण्यासाठी कलम 27 मध्ये सुधारणा करण्यास व सर्वसाधारण सभा घेण्याचा कालावधी वाढविण्यासाठी कलम 75 मध्ये अशी सभा घेण्यासाठी दिनांक 31.03.2021 पर्यंत मुदतवाढ देण्याबाबत सुधारणा करण्यास मान्यता देण्यात आली आहे.

तसेच कलम 81 मधील तरतुदीनुसार प्रत्येक संस्थेला वित्तीय वर्ष समाप्त झाल्यापासून 4 महिन्यांच्या कालावधीत आपले लेखापरीक्षण करून घेणे आवश्यक आहे. मात्र, सध्याच्या कोरोनाच्या साथीमुळे लेखापरिक्षण अहवाल दिनांक 31.07.2020 पूर्वी सादर करणे शक्य नसल्याने कलम 81 चे पोट-कलम 1 मध्ये लेखापरिक्षण अहवाल सादर करण्याच्या कालावधीत दिनांक 31.12.2020 पर्यंत मुदतवाढ करण्यासाठी उक्त कलमात सुधारणा करण्यास मान्यत देण्यात आली आहे.
कोव्हिड-19 या साथ रोगामुळे 250 पेक्षा कमी सदस्य संख्या असलेल्या सहकारी गृहनिर्माण संस्थांच्या निवडणुका पुढे ढकलण्यात आल्या आहेत. त्यामुळे ज्या गृह निर्माण संस्थांची पाच वर्षाची मुदत संपली असेल, अशा संस्थांवरील समिती सदस्य नवीन समिती अस्तित्वात येईपर्यंत नियमितपणे सदस्य म्हणून कायम राहाण्यासाठी कलम 154-ब चे पोट-कलम 19(3 मध्ये )तरतुद करण्यास मान्यता देण्यात आली.

 

Shared by Adv. VINOD SAMPAT

Forfeiture of Booking Amount is not allowed

MahaRera Appellate Tribunal order dt 29 June 2020 holding that forfeiture of booking amount is bad as the customers are forced to sign on one sided clauses. Relying on SC judgement in Pioneer Land and Infrastructure Vs. Govindan Raghavan in Civil Appeal No.72238 of 2O78 decided on 2nd April 2019 by Supreme Court, directions to refund the booking amount of Rs.6.95 lacs towards 5 % flat value

This judgement now mandates that one sided clauses used to forfeit booking amounts will not be upheld by courts… Presumption of unfair negotiation and one sided clauses…

Another pro consumer and testing time for developers….

Click Here for the judgement -21466 OF 2019 

The ‘landmark’ Calcutta Club verdict changes GST norms for clubs

The Supreme Court has said that service tax need not be charged by clubs for services to its members. The same should hold true for the GST, which replaced service tax

Under tax laws, every now and then, a decision is delivered which gets the “landmark” prefix. Names such as BC Srinivasa Shetty, Bacha F Guzdar and the Azadi Bachao Andolan became familiar because of landmark judgments. The features of landmark decisions are that they resolve an issue in a critical area of the law which has been litigated for ages, are decisive judgments and are invariably given by the Supreme Court.

Recently, the Supreme Court pronounced a landmark judgment under service tax laws in the Calcutta Club case. The decision was that clubs are not entitled to charge, collect and pay service tax on any services made to members. The rationale for the decision was that if there are no members, there is no club and vice-versa. A few years earlier, the Jharkhand High Court gave a similar ruling in a case involving the Ranchi Club.

The Supreme Court followed its earlier decision on the same topic in the case of CTO versus Young Men’s Indian Association, (1970) 1 SCC 462. The necessity for the Supreme Court to rule on this matter arose because of the insertion of Clause (e) in Article 366 (29-A) in the Constitution of India through the 46th Amendment. This clause stated that tax on purchase or sale of goods includes a tax on the supply of goods by any unincorporated association or body of persons to a member for cash, deferred payment or another valuable consideration.

The Supreme Court needed to decide whether the doctrine of mutuality has been done away with by Article 366 (29-A) (e), and whether the ratio of Young Men’s Indian Association would continue to operate even after the 46th Amendment.

Click Here for more

INCOME TAX ON CELL TOWER RENT WHICH IS ILLEGAL UNDER BYE LAW 169

Many cooperative societies have rented a portion of their respective terrace for cell tower installation.  In the income tax such earning should be shown as income from house and not from other source of income.  in income return one should show the cell tower space rent as “income from house property” and can get 30% set off in computation of taxable income.  In case cell tower rent is shown as “Income from other sources” or “income from business” the 30% set off will not be allowed.  Since terrace is a portion of “house”, such income from House property is justified.
However, Bye Law 169 prohibits renting of common areas, therefore, such earning are illegal earning.  Therefore, an offence.
Audit of many societies are in progress.  Take proper care for computation of taxable income.
Dr P K Banerjee  drpkbanerjee@hotmail.com
982 097 4449 / 8850 771 660

Sahakar bhann you tube channel

“SAHAKAR BHANN” channel publishes programs in “Housing & Co-operative” general. It produces documentaries, seminars, interviews of the celebrities and people working at various Housing & Co-operative sector. We seek your support and feedback for producing intellectually stimulating and engaging digital content.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTNGriST9QiYzuvhmoIlH-g