Guwahati: During the budget session on 16 July 2021, Ajanta Neog, the Finance Minister of Assam presented a 566.20-crore deficit State Budget for the year 2021-22, with no new tax imposed, further imposing tax waiver for medicines and other equipment related to COVID-19 till September. Also, the waivers given to the tea industry would continue.
In her Budget speech in the State Assembly, the Rs 969.78 crore, the year will end with a deficit of Rs 566.20 crore.
To boost and promote the tea sector and sustainable growth in the state, the finance minister has also announced a host of new schemes related to tax by declaring tax holidays to the tea sector. Also for further promotion and support to the tea sector, which suffered a setback amid the pandemic crisis, the government already granted them full exemption from payment of Agricultural Income Tax with effect from April 1, 2020, for a three years term.
However, due to the opening deficit of Rs. 969.78 crore, this year will end with a deficit of Rs. 566.20 crore.
Besides, Assam is the first state in the entire country in the GST regime to roll out a GST reimbursement scheme for the existing industries enjoying tax incentives under the VAT regime as well as for the new industries. And so far, under the Assam Industries (Tax Reimbursement for Eligible Units) Scheme, an amount of Rs 783.61 crore of SGST has already been reimbursed to the eligible industries,” said the minister.
Amnesty scheme was provided through the Assam Taxation (Liquidation of Arrear Dues) Act, 2019 to clear the long outstanding arrears during 2019-20 and 2020-21. During the current fiscal of 2021-22, it is also proposed to bring a similar scheme.
The state government has further provided various relief to the taxpayers, like reduction in the rate of interest, waiver of late fee, an extension of the due date of filing GSTR returns, relaxation in availing of ITC and amnesty scheme for non-filing of GST return, etc., Ajanta Neog stated.
Moreover, excise revenue collection in the State increased considerably to Rs 2,031.05 crore in 2020-21, due to the reforms taken up by the government. And despite the pandemic, the tax department collected Rs 14,645 crore in the year 2020-21.