19 October 2020


Notifications & Circulars

Press Information Bureau

15.10.2020

Civil

Ministry of Culture issues detailed SOPs for cultural functions and programs to facilitate organization of cultural events during the Covid pandemic

MANU/PIBU/3664/2020

Based on the Unlock 5.0 Guidelines of MHA, and after taking into consideration, suggestions received from various stakeholders in the creative industry, Ministry of Culture today issued detailed SOPs for "Cultural Functions & Programs" on preventive measures to contain spread of COVID-19.

These guidelines contain Standard Operating Procedures to be followed by the management of theatres and performance spaces, as well as the entertainment/creative agencies, artists and crew or any other persons who hire the auditoria or any other open/closed performance spaces, whether on payment or gratis. Comprehensive guidelines have been issued for Artists & Crew, management of Green Rooms, Stage management, Costume and make up trials, Sanitization of venue including stage, Open area seating etc.

It is clarified that cultural activities shall continue to be prohibited inside containment zones. Further, State/UT Govts may consider proposing additional measures as per their field assessment.

The National Directives for COVID-19 Management and the relevant guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, State/UT Governments, etc. shall be strictly complied with during all activities and operations.

These guidelines shall come into effect immediately, and shall continue to be in effect until further orders.

COVID -19 pandemic has hit the cultural and creative economy all ever the world. However, cultural activities are slowly being resumed. In order to encourage those persons and agencies providing cultural services, as well as consumers of such services, it is important to lay down comprehensive guidelines for resumption of these cultural activities in India.

Unlock guidelines have been issued by MHA from time to time and apply to all Central Govt and other institutions, subject to notification of Containment Zones in the respective cities/States. Unlock 4.0 guidelines dated 30 August , 2020 had allowed

social/ academic/sports/entertainment /cultural/sports and religious functions and other congregations with a ceiling of 100 persons outside containment zones with effect from 21st September, 2020, subject to following of all Covid-19 protocols such as social distancing, sanitization etc.

Unlock guidelines 5.0 have been issued by MHA on 30 September, 2020 and are currently in force. Relevant portion of these guidelines with respect to cultural programs [para 1(vii)] is reproduced below-

"Social/ academic/ sports/ entertainment/ cultural/ religious/ political functions and other congregations have already been permitted with a ceiling of 100 persons, outside Containment Zones only. Such gatherings beyond the limit of 100 persons may be permitted, outside Containment Zones, by State/UT governments after 15th October,2020 only and subject to the following conditions:-

a. In closed spaces, a maximum of 50% of the hall capacity will be allowed, with a ceiling of 200 persons. Wearing of face masks, maintaining social distancing, provision for thermal scanning and use of hand wash or sanitizer will be mandatory.

b. In open spaces, keeping the size of the space/ground in view, and with strict observance of social distancing, mandatory wearing of face masks, provision for thermal scanning and hand wash or sanitizer.

State/UT Govts will issue detailed SOPs, to regulate such gatherings and strictly enforce the same."

Tags : SOPs Issuance Cultural functions

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Ministry of Finance 

15.10.2020

Goods and Services Tax

Extension of the time-limit for furnishing the details of outward supplies in FORM GSTR-1 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017

MANU/CGST/0075/2020

1. exercise of the powers conferred by the second proviso to sub-section (1) of section 37 read with, section 168 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 (12 of 2017) (hereafter in this notification referred to as the said Act), the Commissioner, on the recommendations of the Council, hereby extends the time-limit for furnishing the details of outward supplies in FORM GSTR-1 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017, by such class of registered persons having aggregate turnover of more than 1.5 crore rupees in the preceding financial year or the current financial year, for each of the months from October, 2020 to March, 2021 till the eleventh day of the month succeeding such month.

2. The time-limit for furnishing the details or return, as the case may be, under sub-section (2) of section 38 of the said Act, for the months of October, 2020 to March, 2021 shall be subsequently notified in the Official Gazette.

Tags : Extension Time-limit Outward supplies

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Ministry of Finance 

15.10.2020

Goods and Services Tax

Amendment in notification No. 47/2019-Central Tax dated the 9th October, 2019

MANU/CGST/0077/2020

In exercise of the powers conferred by section 148 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 (12 of 2017) (hereinafter referred to as the said Act), the Central Government, on the recommendations of the Council, hereby makes the following amendment in the notification of Government of India in the Ministry of Finance, (Department of Revenue), No. 47/2019-Central Tax dated the 9th October, 2019, published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part II, Section 3, Sub-section (i) vide number G.S.R. 770(E), dated the 9th October, 2019, namely:-

In the said notification in the opening paragraph, for the words and figures "financial years 2017-18 and 2018-19", the words and figures "financial years 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20" shall be substituted.

Tags : Amendment Notification

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Press Information Bureau

15.10.2020

Goods and Services Tax

Special Window to States for meeting the GST Compensation Cess shortfall

MANU/PIBU/3657/2020

Under Option-I States were to be provided a Special Window of Borrowing of Rs. 1.1 lakh cr, and over and above that, an authorisation for additional Open Market Borrowings of 0.5% of their GSDP. The authorisation for increased OMBs of 0.5% of GSDP has been issued by Ministry of Finance on 13th October and are in relaxation of the reform conditions that were stipulated for eligibility. Additionally, under Option-I, the States are also eligible to carry forward their unutilised borrowing space to the next Financial Year.

Under the Special Window, the estimated shortfall of Rs. 1.1 lakh cr. (assuming all States join) will be borrowed by Government of India in appropriate tranches.

The amount so borrowed will be passed on to the States as a back-to-back loan in lieu of GST Compensation Cess releases.

This will not have any impact on the fiscal deficit of the Government of India. The amounts will be reflected as the capital receipts of the State Governments and as part of financing of its respective fiscal deficits.

This will avoid differential rates of interest that individual States may be charged for their respective SDLs and will be an administratively easier arrangement.

It may also be clarified that the General Government (States+Centre) borrowings will not increase by this step. The States that get the benefit from the Special Window are likely to borrow a considerably lesser amount from the additional borrowing facility of 2% of GSDP (from 3% to 5%) under the Aatma Nirbhar Package.

Tags : Special Window States GST Compensation Cess Shortfall

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Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority

15.10.2020

Insurance

Designated Nodal Officers for Ombudsman Offices

MANU/IRDA/0063/2020

1. The Institution of Insurance Ombudsman plays a vital role in providing resolution in timely and cost effective manner. Insurers need to have a greater liaison with every Insurance Ombudsman office in order to ensure that the complaints are disposed of in a timely manner.

2. Insurance Ombudsmen have expressed that they are facing difficulties in dealing with cases of PSU General Insurance Companies in the absence of any responsible Officer who can liaison with their Offices to ensure that the self contained note is filed in time and documents/information sought by Insurance Ombudsman is submitted without any delay.

3. To ensure proper and timely disposal of complaints, the following procedure shall be adopted by all the PSU general insurance companies:

a) Appoint a "Nodal Officer", not below the rank of Deputy Manager for each of the 17 Ombudsman Centres.

b) The names/Phone No's including mobile No's/e-mail id's of the Nodal Officers shall be shared with the Ombudsman/ECOI.

c) The Nodal Officer shall be responsible for placing self contained notes before Insurance Ombudsman within the specified timeline. He/she shall also ensure that all the information/documents called for by Insurance Ombudsman are submitted in a timely manner.

d) The Nodal officer shall ensure that the concerned officer of the Insurance Company attend the hearing on the date and time specified by Ombudsman in the notice for hearing.

e) The Nodal Officer shall ensure compliance with the recommendation or Award of the Ombudsman as the case may be within the specified timeline, and update the details of compliance in Complaints Management System of ECOI.

4. The Public Sector General Insurance Companies shall designate Nodal Officers for all the offices of Insurance Ombudsman Office latest by 20.10.2020 and forward the list of the same with contact details (e-mail id, Phone no.) by uploading the same in their website. As and when there is a change in the said list, the same shall be notified to ECOI immediately so as to enable them to keep the list updated at all times. The ECOI shall share the updated list with IRDAI from time to time.

The above procedure shall come into force with immediate effect.

Tags : Nodal Officers Ombudsman Offices

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Securities and Exchange Board of India

14.10.2020

Capital Market

Caution to Investors against unsolicited investment tips

MANU/SPRL/0051/2020

It has come to the notice of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) that unsolicited messages containing stock tips/ investment advice with respect to listed companies are increasingly being circulated through bulk SMS, websites and social media platforms like WhatsApp, Telegram, etc. Such messages are sent to investors and general public usually recommending to deal in specific stocks of listed companies, indicating target prices and giving fraudulent, misleading/false information relating to listed companies, inducing them to deal in these stocks.

The circulation of such misleading messages is not only detrimental to the interest of the investors but also adversely affects the integrity of the securities market.

All investors and the general public are hereby advised/cautioned not to rely on such unsolicited stock tips / investment advice circulated through bulk SMS, websites and social media platforms. Investors are further advised to exercise appropriate due diligence before dealing in the securities market.

Tags : Caution Investors Investment tips

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Securities and Exchange Board of India

13.10.2020

Capital Market

Standardisation of procedure to be followed by Debenture Trustee(s) in case of 'Default' by Issuers of listed debt securities

MANU/SMIS/0005/2020

1. Representations were made by Debenture Trustee(s) regarding the process to be followed in case of 'Default' by issuers of listed debt securities. After consultation with stakeholders including investors, Debenture Trustee(s), Issuers etc., procedures to be followed by the Debenture Trustee(s) in case of 'Default' by issuers of listed debt securities has been decided. This circular prescribes the process to be followed by the Debenture Trustee(s) in case of 'Default' by issuers of listed debt securities including seeking consent from the investors for enforcement of security and/or entering into an Inter-Creditor Agreement ("ICA").

A. Event of default

2. Regulation 51 read with the Explanation to Clause A (11) in Part B of Schedule III of Securities and Exchange Board of India (Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements), 2015 ("LODR Regulations") defines 'default' as non-payment of interest or principal amount in full on the pre-agreed date which shall be recognized at the first instance of delay in the servicing of any interest or principal on debt.

3. In the manner of calling 'event of default', due to the presence of multiple ISIN's which may have been issued under the same Information Memorandum(s) ("IM(s)") or a single ISIN which may have been split across multiple IM(s), it is clarified that 'event of default' shall be reckoned at the ISIN level, as all terms and conditions of issuance of security are same under a single ISIN even though it might have been issued under multiple IMs.

B. Consent of investors for enforcement of security and for signing the ICA

4. The Reserve Bank of India ("RBI"), vide Circular dated June 07, 2019 issued the Reserve Bank of India (Prudential Framework for Resolution of Stressed Assets) Directions 2019 which inter alia specified the mechanism for resolution of stressed assets by Lenders (viz. Scheduled Commercial Banks, All-India Term Financial Institutions, Small Finance Banks, Systemically Important Non-Deposit Taking Non-Banking Finance Companies (NBFCs) as well as Deposit Taking NBFCs). In terms thereof, investors in debt securities, being financial creditors, are approached by other lenders to sign an agreement, referred to as the Inter Creditor Agreement ("ICA"), under specific terms detailed in the framework as stipulated by RBI.

5. Regulation 59 of LODR Regulations provides that material modification in the structure of debt securities shall be made only after obtaining the consent of the requisite majority of investors. Regulation 18 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Issuer and Listing of Debt Securities) Regulations, 2008 ("ILDS Regulations"), applicable in case of public issue of debt securities, stipulates a period of fifteen days for giving notice in case of rollover of debt securities and further provides for approval to be obtained from not less than 75% of the holders by value of such debt securities.

6. As the resolution plan in the ICA may involve restructuring including roll-over of debt securities, requiring the consent of the investors, the process to be followed for seeking consent for enforcement of security and/or entering into an Inter-Creditor Agreement shall be as under:

6.1. The Debenture Trustee(s) shall send a notice to the investors within 3 days of the event of default by registered post/acknowledgement due or speed post/acknowledgement due or courier or hand delivery with proof of delivery as also through email as a text or as an attachment to email with a notification including a read receipt, and proof of dispatch of such notice or email, shall be maintained.

6.2. The notice shall contain the following:

6.2.1. negative consent for proceeding with the enforcement of security;

6.2.2. positive consent for signing the ICA;

6.2.3. the time period within which the consent needs to be provided, viz. consent to be given within 15 days from the date of notice; and

6.2.4. the date of meeting to be convened,

6.3. Debenture Trustee(s) shall convene the meeting of all investors within 30 days of the event of default (as per para 6.1 above):

Provided that in case the default is cured between the date of notice and the date of meeting, then the convening of such a meeting may be dispensed with.

6.4. In view of Regulation 15(2)(b) of SEBI (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, in case of debt securities issued by way of public issue, the notice sent by the Debenture Trustee(s) in para 6.2 shall not contain the consent as per para 6.2.1 and the requirement to convene a meeting for enforcement of security, as per para 6.3, shall not be applicable.

6.5. The Debenture Trustee(s) shall take necessary action to enforce security or enter into the ICA or as decided in the meeting of investors, subject to the following:

6.5.1. In case(s) where the majority of investors expressed their dissent against enforcement of the security, the Debenture Trustee(s) shall not enforce security.

6.5.2. In case(s) where majority of investors expressed their consent to enter into ICA, the Debenture Trustee(s) shall enter into the ICA.

6.5.3. In case(s) consents are not received for enforcement of security and for signing ICA, Debenture Trustee(s) shall take further action, if any, as per the decision taken in the meeting of the investors.

6.5.4. The Debenture Trustee(s) may form a representative committee of the investors to participate in the ICA or to enforce the security or as may be decided in the meeting.

6.6. The consent of the majority of investors shall mean the approval of not less than 75% of the investors by value of the outstanding debt and 60% of the investors by number at the ISIN level.

C. Conditions for signing of ICA by Debenture Trustee(s) on behalf of investors

7. The Debenture Trustee(s) may sign the ICA and consider the resolution plan on behalf of the investors upon compliance with the following conditions:

7.1. The signing of the ICA and agreeing to the resolution plan is in the interest of investors and in compliance with the Companies Act, 2013 and the rules made thereunder, the Securities Contracts (Regulations) Act, 1956 and the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 and the rules, regulations and circulars issued thereunder from time to time.

7.2. If the resolution plan imposes condition(s) on the Debenture Trustee(s) that are not in accordance with the provisions of Companies Act, 2013 and the rules made thereunder, the Securities Contracts (Regulations) Act, 1956 and the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 and the rules, regulations and circulars issued thereunder from time to time, then the Debenture Trustee(s) shall be free to exit the ICA altogether with the same rights as if it had never signed the ICA. Under these circumstances, the resolution plan shall not be binding on the Debenture Trustee(s).

7.3. The resolution plan shall be finalized within 180 days from the end of the review period. If the resolution plan is not finalized within 180 days from the end of the review period, then the Debenture Trustee(s) shall be free to exit the ICA altogether with the same rights as if it had never signed the ICA and the resolution plan shall not be binding on the Debenture Trustee(s). However, if the finalization of the resolution plan extends beyond 180 days, the Debenture Trustee(s) may consent to an extension beyond 180 days subject to the approval of the investors regarding the total timeline. The total timeline shall not exceed 365 days from the date of commencement of the review period.

7.4. If any of the terms of the approved Resolution Plan are contravened by any of the signatories to the ICA, the Debenture Trustee(s) shall be free to exit the ICA and seek appropriate legal recourse or any other action as deemed fit in the interest of the investors.

8. The Debenture Trustee(s) shall ensure that the conditions mentioned in paragraphs 7.2, 7.3 and 7.4 are suitably incorporated in the ICA, before signing of the ICA.

9. This circular is issued in exercise of the powers conferred upon SEBI under Section 11 (1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 read with the provisions of Regulation 2A of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, Regulation 31(1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Issue and Listing of Debt Securities) Regulations, 2008 and Regulation 101(1) or the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Listing Obligation and Disclosure Requirements) Regulations, 2015 to protect the interest of investors in securities and to promote the development of, and to regulate, the securities market.

10. The provisions of this circular shall come into force with immediate effect.

Tags : Standardisation Procedure Debt securities

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